Avenue March 2020

Page 1



Will co-working save our downtown?


How to get over your fears and enjoy the Rockies

B e St R e StAUR ant S 2020

BED: 3 BATH: 2 1,454 SQ.FT. MLS C4281882 Fabulous, NEW 3 bedroom condo at The Royal. This outstanding condo is in the Sky Collection with lavish upgrades includes a gourmet kitchen with custom

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#16 8020 Silver Springs Road NW, Calgary, AB

BED: 2 BATH: 2 1,061 SQ.FT. MLS C4282588

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4 Elma Street East, Okotoks, AB

BED: 4 BATH: 2/1 3,775 SQ.FT. MLS C4257951

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54 Posthill Drive SW, Calgary, AB

BED: 4 BATH: 3/1 3,027 SQ.FT. MLS C4257307 Spectacular "Canmore inspired" home, private treed 1/3 acre lot, superior finishing details, close to Webber, Rundle, Calgary Academy and Aspen Landing. Barb Richardson 403.613.8737

84 Edenstone Way NW, Calgary, AB

BED: 4 BATH: 3/1 2,664 SQ.FT. MLS C4283368

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Formal show home with a wonderful layout and flooded with natural light as it is an end unit, offering 2,800+ sq ft of living space plus a 764 sq ft. Carriage house.

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3815 18 Street SW, Calgary, AB BED: 4 BATH: 2/1 2,710 SQ.FT. MLS C4282452 This 2,710 sq.ft. Infill has it all. Double attached garage, beautiful West rear yard landscaping, great City View off of two East facing balconies. It has been updated through the years and recently has been painted and staged to look its best.

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BED: 4 BATH: 2 1,143 SQ.FT. MLS C4282305 Charming, well maintained, home located on in East Elbow Park. Amazing location walking distance to schools, parks.

Derek Deemter 403.796.4688

240 Clearwater Way, Elbow Valley Estates, AB BED: 3 BATH: 2/1 1,645 SQ.FT. MLS C4261575 BACKING LAKE - This pristine 3 bedroom walkout bungalow villa features hardwood, main floor den and spacious rooms. Jacqueline Thorogood 403.909.8766 Barb Richardson 403.613.8737

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cabinets. Heather Waddell 403.471.0467 $1,199,000 1333 Montreal Avenue SW, Calgary, AB BED: 3 BATH: 2/1 2,458 SQ.FT. MLS C4275254 Sophisticated, contemporary renovated Mount Royal home located on one of the the finest streets in Mount Royal. The open floor plan is flooded with natural light. Heather Waddell 403.471.0467 $2,147,000 3802 7 Street SW, Calgary, AB BED: 3 BATH: 2/1 2,676 SQ.FT. MLS C4283060 Location in the Heart of Elbow Park. Located on a 50 x 125 ft corner lot and walking distance to schools and Glencoe Club. Designed by McDowell and Built by Laratta Homes Tony Laratta 403.863.9506 $2,125,000 NEW LISTING «CONDOS SINGLE FAMILY HOMES » Canadian Owned and Operated. E.&O.E.: This information is from sources which we deem reliable, but must be verified by prospective Purchasers and may be subject to change or withdrawal. SOTHEBYSREALTY.CA CALGARY 403.254.5315 CANMORE 1.855.254.5315 VANCOUVER 604.632.3300 SUN PEAKS 250.578.7773 KELOWNA 1.877.530.3933 VICTORIA 250.380.3933 TORONTO 416.960.9995 MONTREAL 514.933.4777 « SINGLE FAMILY HOMES SOTHEBYSREALTY.CA #3101 433 11 Avenue SE, Calgary, AB For those who seek an exceptional life. CONDOS »
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What’s in a name?

We’re the first to admit that our name is a little odd, but it’s been that way for more than 50 years. Our history dates back to 1965, when Ruth Fertel, a single mother of two boys, purchased a restaurant called Chris’ Steak House in New Orleans and turned it into one of the most notable eateries in the city. When a large kitchen fire completely destroyed the building, Ruth moved her business to another locale not too far away, but she wasn’t allowed to move the Chris Steak House name along with it. So, with a glint of mischief in her eye, she named her new place Ruth’s Chris Steak House — and a tongue-twisting legacy was born.

How do we make your experience so special?

It all starts with the food, of course. We use only the top 2 percent of beef available, which is referred to as Prime. We serve it on piping hot plates with sizzling butter — and the sound of that sizzle, coupled with the steak’s mouth-watering aroma, are almost intoxicating. The best part is, everything on the menu tastes even better than it smells or sounds. Match this with an award-winning wine list and attentive hospitality, and you’re in for a truly memorable meal.

Elegant and approachable

As a fine-dining establishment, Ruth’s Chris brings an elevated experience to steak connoisseurs, and we offer a variety of ongoing promotions to make this experience all the more accessible. The Prime Time menu, for instance, is offered daily before 6:30PM and all night on Sunday. It’s a twocourse dinner that starts at $49, but you can add a third course for $10 and a glass of wine for $10. For couples, Date Night is available every Wednesday. At $120 for two people, it’s a three-course dinner that includes a glass of wine for each person.

Dine in style

With private dining rooms available for any of your special events or business meals, and prime ingredients cooked and served to perfection, it’s no wonder Ruth’s Chris won the 2018 Trip Advisor award for best steak house. And, thanks to our two locations in Alberta — one in Edmonton, one in Calgary — our world-class steak house experience is waiting just beyond your own front door. As our founder, Ruth Fertel, liked to say, “Life’s too short to eat anywhere else.”

Open daily at 5 PM • RuthsChrisSteakHouse.ca Calgary • 294, 115 - 9th Ave SE, 2nd Floor of Calgary Tower Edmonton • 9990 Jasper Ave



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PCL’s Special Projects division delivers for hospitality clients a full range of services, including preconstruction, new construction, and renovations.

PCL is the proud builder of the Sky Bistro in Banff, Forte Restaurant at Kananaskis Mountain Lodge, and Sucre Patisserie & Cafe in downtown Calgary.

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Learn more about the revitalization stephenavenueplace.ca Office Leasing Inquiries 403.298.0410 Retail Leasing Inquiries 403.206.2130 A unique 40th floor dining experience is coming soon a new restaurant presented by Stephen Avenue & 2nd Street
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72 Fashion

Stylish resort wear that you can take away with you now, and save for summery days ahead at home.

B e St R e StAUR ant S 2020

Our annual list identifies the superstars of the local dining scene, including the 10 Best New restaurants and the 20 Best Overall restaurants in the city right now. Plus, top picks in a variety of dining categories so you’ll know exactly what to say when asked: Where should we go eat?


Co-working in Calgary



A look at the growing trend of joining a co-work space rather than renting a traditional office, and what it means for the local economy.

Local Gift Guide Holiday Party Hosting Guide 25 YEARS OF CITY LIFE STYLE CALGARY ALL TOGETHER SCAREDY CAT S GUIDE TO THE MOUNTAINS How to get over your fears and enjoy the Rockies BeSt ReStAURantS 2020 10 BEST NEW 20 BEST OVERALL 34 MORE BEST PLACES TO EAT NOW
Nathan Kunz, Käthe Lemon and Nicole MacKay
contents MARCH 2020
22 avenueMARCH.20
Avenue Calgary .com 23 the most delicious destination in the Canadian Rockies Reservation: 1.800.661.1586 www.posthotel.com



31 Detours

Behold, the Blackfoot Truckstop Diner’s flapper pie! The closest thing this city has to an official dessert. Plus, the Calgary connection to the TV series Letterkenny, and a chat with the man behind the voice every Flames fan will recognize.

86 Profile

Former Glenbow CEO Donna Livingstone talks about her new life in Banff heading up the Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies and reflects on her old life at one of Calgary’s cultural touchstones.

88 Mountains

Useful information for all the admitted scaredy cats out there who aspire to do more in the mountains, including how to walk on a glacier, do a wellness retreat, and choose a hiking trail where it would be virtually impossible to get lost.

96 Decor

A new build in an established northwest neighbourhood gives a family the modern aesthetic they wanted and the cozy haven they needed.

104 The List

Jeweller Kirsten Ross of The Goldsmiths shines some light on the things she loves in her adopted city.


Get the Look

Planters to spruce up any room.

24 avenueMARCH.20 contents
MARCH 2020
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Editor-in-Chief Käthe Lemon, klemon@redpointmedia.ca

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26 avenueMARCH.20
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Avenue Calgary .com 27 April 2020 NEXT ISSUE Thank you for choosing us as one of Calgary's Best New Restaurants floresandpine.com Have a seat at our table, where food and drink become an experience. TOP 40 UNDER 40 NOMINATION S FOR THE CLASS OF 2020 ARE OPEN UNTIL APRIL 30! Nominate at top40under40.com best dreed 2020 avenue’s Find out who made our annual list of style-savvy Calgarians. THE BUSINESS OF LOCAL FASHION Local designers tell us about what it’s really like to work in this industry here in Calgary. GENERATION SANDWICH All the best things on sliced bread.

Eat Up!

Calgary punches above its weight for dining options.

Here at Avenue, writing about restaurants is our bread and butter, so to speak. Our dining and food coverage is often the main course with other aspects of city life serving as the side dishes. And that is never more true than in our annual Best Restaurants issue each March.

This ever-evolving city continues to test our capacity to keep up, with new restaurants, new dishes and new concepts. We were surprised and delighted by the quantity and quality of new restaurants that have opened here recently. They represent a wide range of dining styles, from the very casual Moose and Poncho, to the upscale but comfortable Flores & Pine, to the fine-dining swank of Chairman’s Steakhouse. There are amazing urban offerings such as Lulu Bar and inventive

new restaurants in the suburbs, such as Purlieu. There’s variety in menu, and even variety in business model represented by the collectively owned and operated vegetarian restaurant The Allium.

It is certainly no longer the case that Calgary is a “meat and potatoes” kind of town. The best restaurants here rival those you can find in any city and our chefs continue to be celebrated around the country and the world while still finding it rewarding to build their careers here. On this year’s Best Overall list and on the list of winners in a variety of dining categories, you’ll find a strong showing from perennial favourites as well as some delicious new entries.

But Calgarians cannot live by bread alone!

In this issue we also highlight fashions that provide ideal looks for warm-weather getaways, explore the changes co-working spaces are making, not only to our work lives, but to the landscape of commercial real estate, and interview former Glenbow CEO Donna Livingstone about her move to head up the Whyte Museum in Banff. Plus, we offer tips for scaredy cats (like me) to feel more comfortable adventuring in the mountains. From hiking trails you truly can’t get lost on, to a guide to what you really need to know about bears, you’ll find more on page 88. Whether you’re hungry for dinner or more information about your city, we hope to serve it to you. Be sure to sign up for our weekly newsletters at AvenueCalgary.com/newsletters so that you don’t miss out on a single morsel.


In our February Openings department we stated that the new Cravings Bistro in Arts Commons is next to Capuccini. In fact, Cravings Bistro replaced Capuccini. We regret the error.

28 avenueMARCH.20 A Highflying Family Adventure Awaits! MARCH 18-21 TICKETS AT ALBERTABALLET.COM EDITOR ’ S NOTE Käthe Lemon Editor-in-Chief klemon@redpointmedia.ca
Illustration by Venessa Brewer
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30 avenueMARCH.20 Fly non-stop on the Dreamliner from Calgary to Rome, Paris, Dublin and London. Seasonal start and end dates may apply. Collect some passport stamps.


A Slice of Calgary Life

March 14 is known as “Pi Day,” and although this is technically a mathematical reference to the month and day being 3.14, an exploration of the iconic (and divisive) Blackfoot Truckstop Diner flapper pie seems in order.

Calgary author Will Ferguson has described ordering pie at the Blackfoot Truckstop Diner as a “moral crossroads” every Calgarian should get to. “When you stand at the threshold of the Blackfoot Diner, you have to ask yourself a hard question: Are you flapper pie or banana cream pie?” says Ferguson. “It’s like The Stones or The Beatles; Pepsi or Coke.” While Ferguson counts himself in the banana-cream camp, he says his brother and fellow author Ian Ferguson always opts for the flapper whenever he visits from Vancouver, leading to a recurring brotherly debate.

Photograph by Jared Sych
Avenue Calgary .com 31
The Blackfoot Truckstop Diner’s (in)famous flapper pie stands six inches high.

Arguably more iconic as a conversation piece than a dish, the flapper pie has been a staple for decades at the 24-hour diner on the eastern end of Inglewood. Built on a graham-cracker crust, the pie has a custard filling that’s topped by a towering meringue and garnished with a sprinkling of graham-cracker crumbs. When manager Tanya Brown began as a server at the diner back in 2001, she says late owner Edna Taylor made sure each slice measured up to her literal high standard. “The pie had to be six inches high, or it was no good,” Brown says. “That’s how she wanted it. And we’ve always just done it that way since.”

Flapper pie is not exclusive to the Blackfoot Truckstop, though it does seem to be rooted in the prairies. Countless internet recipes include preambles with family stories dating back generations. That said, the diner’s version has become particularly legendary, earning a “world famous” designation on the menu. It’s not just talk, either: when you search up “flapper pie” on Wikipedia, it’s the Blackfoot’s version that appears as the feature photo.

According to Brown, the pie’s fans are a loyal lot — the diner prepares between six and eight flapper pies each day, and it’s rare for there to be any left over by the next morning. While Ferguson remains a lifelong banana-cream advocate, he admits that the flapper pie should be experienced at least once. “It’s a part of [prairie] history and it’s a unique experience. It’s getting harder and harder to find those type of things, especially in Calgary, that are one of a kind,” he says. “But, I don’t think you’re required to finish a piece of flapper pie.” —N.K.

Calgary’s Letterkenny Connection

Ashared love of the Calgary Flames, a beer-league hockey team and a set of wildly popular YouTube videos originally united former Calgarian Nathan Dales with Jared Keeso, creator and producer of the TV show Letterkenny Now, nearly 10 years after they met, Dales stars as Letterkenny series lead, Darryl, alongside Keeso. And next month, he returns to his hometown of Calgary for the Letterkenny Live show.

Dales grew up in Calgary, but left to pursue acting, ending up in Vancouver (by way of Los Angeles) in 2008. There, he met Keeso, a fellow actor, hockey player and Flames fan. In between beer-league hockey games and cheering on the Flames, the pair worked on a series of fun, satirical YouTube videos inspired by Keeso’s upbringing in the small town of Listowel, Ont., titled “Letterkenny Problems.” These first videos caught the attention of millions of viewers, among them Mark Montiefore from New Metric Media, who, with the help of Bell Media, transformed Keeso’s concept into a TV show.

Dales says he knew personalities like those portrayed in the show while growing up in Calgary.

Whether it was the hockey players, “hicks,” “skids,” or those who are, in his words, just a little “rough around the edges,” it was easy for him to draw on experiences from his upbringing and incorporate that into his character. Dales says a big part of Letterkenny’s appeal and success is that so many people feel like they know, or can relate to, these characters. “Wherever you’re from — the States, Canada, a small town or a city — you can see yourself or people that you know within these groups, and I think that’s what people grab on to,” he says.

The Letterkenny cast recently wrapped up filming the show’s ninth season, and will be on the road until April 21 bringing Letterkenny Live to more than 40 cities across Canada and the U.S. Dales says one of the biggest highlights of this tour will be stopping in Calgary. “It’s special because I grew up there,” he says. “I get to come home and perform in front of a bunch of family members and friends in my own city. It’s amazing.”

Letterkenny Live comes to Calgary April 3 at the Grey Eagle Resort & Casino. For more information go to letterkenny.tv

32 avenueMARCH.20 DETOURS
Nathan Dales photograph by Amanda Matlovich Actor Nathan Dales returns to his hometown this month as part of Letterkenny Live.
-Tanya Brown



Ellen Close has always had an affinity for highlighting social issues in her plays, specifically how those issues impact individuals. Cipher, Close’s most recent work with collaborator Braden Griffiths, was inspired by Australia’s Somerton man case. In 1948, the body of a never-identified man was found on Somerton beach with the Persian phrase for “finished,” ripped from a book, in his pocket. Close and Griffiths found resonance for today’s audiences in their fictionalized version of the story, which they set partially in modern Canada.

“The thing about a cold case is there is no answer, but there is that promise when you go to the theatre there will be — or something satisfying. We knew that even on our best day, we couldn’t invent that, so we were interested in a bigger narrative that connected to our present experience. We wanted a conversation about the impact of surveillance and particularly digital surveillance. Cipher depicts a Cold War era and a shadowy agent figure in a trench coat, and it plays into all these ideas that we have from film of what surveillance looks like. The way that modern surveillance shows up in that timeline seems more drab and benign, but it’s actually far more dangerous.”—S.G.

Cipher runs from March 21 to April 19 at Vertigo Theatre, vertigotheatre.com

Avenue Calgary .com 33
Photograph by Mike Tan, Diane & Mike Photography


Keeping the Flames Burning

Calgary Flames arena announcer Beesley’s booming baritone has become synonymous with home games at the Scotiabank Saddledome.

Debuting the same year as Jarome Iginla (a name that would become a trademark call for the announcer), Beesley has spent every season since 1996 in the booth above the Saddledome’s ice, calling out goals, penalties and his now signature “Your Calgary Flames!” introduction.

“It’s the same adrenaline rush,” says Beesley, recalling his first game. “The endorphins kick in the minute you do the name.”

Beesley — whose last-name-only moniker stems from his time on the air at CJAY 92 — is an enduring voice in Calgary broadcasting. He has worked at both JACK 96.9 and CJAY, among other stations, and teaches presentation, voicing and on-air classes at SAIT, all while moonlighting for the past 23 NHL seasons at the Saddledome.

However, it was not always clear that Beesley would be back in the booth for season number 24. Last summer, he broke his collarbone, wrist and several ribs when he fell from a stage at a Stampede charity event. The injury initially cast doubt on his ability to continue working with the Flames. But making it back for another season became a goal that helped him push through the months of recuperation. “If you don’t have that drive, you’d just ... sit back and watch the world go by,’” says Beesley. “I didn’t want to do that.”

Ultimately, Beesley says, the team left the decision of whether to return this season to him. The decision to give it another go was “the turning point” in his ongoing recovery, he says. He was back in the booth for the Flames’ home opener.

With his comeback season coming to a close, the voice that has become integral to the Saddledome experience says the thrill still hasn’t waned for him. “I’ve never worked a day in my life. Never will. It’s always been fun,” he says.

“You may not be a millionaire, but boy, you can have a lot of fun in this job.” —Nathan Kunz


This hub in West Hillhurst is home to more than 25 individual businesses that offer beauty and wellness services such as hairstyling, teeth-whitening, massages and more. 300, 1918 Kensington Rd. N.W., 403-923-1516, districtstudiosyyc.com


This new restaurant and beer hall from the Creative Restaurants Group (Bonterra Trattoria, Posto Pizzeria & Bar, Cibo 17th, et al.) serves Calgary beers and ciders with North American cuisine.

1153 Kensington Cres. N.W., 403-452-1339, freehouseyyc.com


Edmonton plant-based eatery Kb&co recently opened its first Calgary location in the Beltline. Stop by for a beverage from the vegan espresso bar, or food offerings such as oat and hemp-seed berry waffles or coconut “BLT” sandwiches.

926 16 Ave. S.W., kbandcompany.com


Located in East Village’s Alt Hotel, chef Darren MacLean’s new restaurant is focused on fish and plant-based fare in a minimalist dining space by Connie Young Design. Nupo also has an omakase sushi counter that seats by reservation only.

631 Confluence Way S.E., nupo.ca

34 avenueMARCH.20
Beesley photograph courtesy of Beesley; Free House photograph courtesy of Free House; Nupo photograph by Wide Bright Sun Photography
Calgary Flames announcer Beesley. Free House.
Avenue Calgary .com 35 A unique ode to the classic jazz era Of New York City in the heart of Westman Village RESERVATIONS: 403.313.1051 Located in Westman Village on Mahogany Lake Live jazz Thursday to Saturday Jazzy Brunch Sundays Build your own Martini experience AlvinsJazzClub.com CM STUDIO FILE PREPARED AT: 100% DOCKET / FILE NAME: 20-JAY-149_Alvins_Print_Ad_Avenue DATE: January 27, 2020 10:23 AM TRIM SIZE: 7.875” x 4.8125” CREATIVE: EQ C M Y CM MY CY CMY K BMeX_Avenue2020.pdf 1 2020-01-16 7:09 PM




New music based on the work of Iranian poet Simin Behbahani will be unveiled by the Instruments of Happiness ensemble and vocalist Marie-Annick Béliveau at this New Works Calgary production. Festival Hall, 1215 10 Ave. S.E., neworkscalgary.com




One of the most enduring and critically acclaimed indie rock bands of the past three decades stops in Calgary in support of its 11th album, Ode to Joy. (Contrary to what you might be thinking, there will be no Beethoven covers during the concert.)

Jack Singer Concert Hall, Arts Commons, 403-294-9494, artscommons.ca

this month do to



MARCH 18 TO 21

One of the most enchanting stories of all time comes to life on stage as the penultimate show in Alberta Ballet’s 2019-20 season.

Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium, 1415 14 Ave. N.W., 403-245-4549, albertaballet.com



This interpretation of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet imagines the life the star-crossed lovers would have lived had they not taken their lives. The show is a coproduction by Lunchbox Theatre and The Shakespeare Company Lunchbox Theatre, 160, 115 9 Ave. S.E. , 403-265-4292, shakespearecompany.com




Katherine Fawcett’s new collection of short stories The Swan Suit takes tales of mundane, everyday life and layers in unexpected, fantastical elements. It launches with a free reading event this month.

Shelf Life Books, 1302 4 St. S.W., 403-265-1033, shelflifebooks.ca


WinSport’s Planted culinary series expands with a competition event for which participating chefs will create plant-based dishes to pair with pinot and cocktails. The list of participants includes WinSport’s catering department as well as local restaurants such as Alloy, Foreign Concept and Winebar


WinSport, 88 Canada Olympic Rd. S.W., 403-247-5452, winsport.ca

36 avenueMARCH.20
The Lioness of Iran. The Lioness of Iran photograph courtesy of New Works Calgary; Peter Pan courtesy of Alberta Ballet Alberta Ballet’s Peter Pan
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B e St R e StAUR ant S 2020

Welcome to our 17th annual overview of the hottest, most crave-worthy, bucket-listy eateries in Calgary.

It has been a boom year for new restaurants especially, so not only are we breaking down the top 10 newcomers, but we’re declaring an outright winner: Lulu Bar! It was impossible to ignore the overwhelming support Lulu received from the almost 800 people who responded to our restaurant poll this year, so we decided to give credit where credit is due. (The poll results inform our decisions about who makes the lists, but do not dictate them.)

In addition to the list of best new restaurants, we also celebrate the 20 best overall restaurants (unranked) with suggestions on what to order, and highlight the 58 best in a variety of categories, such as barbecue, Thai and Italian, as well as places to see and be seen.

Our “best” efforts are always challenging because we’re comparing a wide variety of tastes, styles and experiences, but we’re confident there’s something for everyone here. So pull up a seat and dig in.

page 72.
Avenue Calgary .com 39 • best 10New • best OVerAll 20 • best in CaTegoRy 58

fOOd Pan-Pacific sharing plates.

vibe Vibrant, fun, mid-century chic.

Order this Coal-roasted halibut in coconut hot-and-sour broth with a “Mahalo” toastedcoconut vodka soda.

knOw this Happy hour is 2 to 5 p.m., when most drinks are half price.

average price

$15 (small plates), $31 (main plates).


lulu bar

It is a rare event when our Best Restaurants survey provides clear consensus on the favourite for the best new restaurant — so much so that we’ve never declared an outright winner in the category.* But this year it was impossible to ignore the overwhelming love for Lulu Bar so we’re saying it: Lulu Bar is Calgary’s Best New Restaurant!

Opened in April, 2019, by the Concorde Group, it’s fitting that the hottest spot in town features dishes and drinks inspired by the Pacific and the many sunny regions that touch it, from Asia to Hawaii to B.C. and California. In the kitchen, chef de cuisine Joseph Sokoloff, who lived in Vietnam and Indonesia as a kid before moving back to Alberta, executes a menu of bar snacks and sharing plates that are light, fresh and whimsical (hot dog bao or house “spam” anyone?) The menu is overseen by JP Pedhirney, senior culinary director of the Concorde Group, whose work you may know and love from Bridgette Bar, also a Concorde endeavour, and with which Lulu shares aesthetic similarities.

The lightness of the menu is complemented by the interior design. Designers Frank Architecture & Interiors, took what was formerly Local 510 and transformed it into a funky, mid-centurystyle space with an easy-breezy feel. There’s yearround patio seating and the garage-style doors facing 17th Avenue S.W. can be opened to let the outdoors in, adding to the whole upscale surfshack aesthetic. It’s the perfect setting for Lulu’s tiki cocktail menu, created by bar and beverage director Stephen Phipps. And if tropical bevvies aren’t your thing, there’s plenty more to sip, including wine, beer, sake and low- and no-alcohol cocktails. —J.H.

510 17 Ave. S.W., 403-930-5707

(text message only), lulubar.ca

*Survey does not determine results but rather informs our editorial decisions.

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W i N N e R
(top) Lulu front patio. (middle) The bar has 12 curated beers and cider on tap. (bottom) House “spam” with toasted nori, and ginger dill pickles.
Avenue Calgary .com 41
Natural light streams in through the garage-style doors facing 17th Avenue S.W.

the allium

While the worker cooperative model certainly isn’t a new concept, eating at a restaurant where everyone is an owner does feel novel in Calgary. None of that would matter much, though, if the food served at The Allium wasn’t excellent. Thankfully, it is.

The Allium is a vegetarian restaurant that veers from using soy and other meat substitutes to focusing on dishes made from honest-to-goodness

vegetables, nuts, seeds, cheeses, herbs and fine spices, sourced as locally and ethically as possible.

The menu of small and large plates span flavour profiles from around the globe, with a penchant for Mediterranean and Middle Eastern ingredients and textures, as well as French, Italian, Asian and Latin American influences. The menu changes seasonally to ensure high-quality, in-season produce, meaning dishes may be reimagined with new ingredients

over the seasons. The Allium is also waste conscious and working toward becoming a zero-waste restaurant.

The small dining room sports dark wood, a staff-painted mural and a variety of cascading greenery. It is humble, cosmopolitan, thoughtful and modern, which represents both the ownership’s principles and the natural elegance of the menu. —C.G. 211A 12 Ave. S.W., 403-264-5416, theallium.ca


Inventive vegetarian with global influences.

vibe Restrained modern dining room. Order this Vegan Caesar salad made with whatever greens are in season.

knOw this Nearly everything on the menu can be made vegan and adjusted to accommodate allergens like gluten.

average price $11 (small plates), $18 (large plates).

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• best New
(clockwise from bottom right) Za’atar buckwheat polenta; bok choy Caesar salad; smoked chickpeas with caper-garlic emulsion; triple-fried potatoes with mixed mushrooms.

allOra everyday Italian


Reliably, authentically Italian.

vibe Airy, approachable and fuss-free. Order this Ricotta gnocchi with braised AAA beef and caramelized onions.

knOw this On Sundays you can have pasta for two and a half-litre of house wine for $40 from 2 p.m. until close.

average price $20 per pizza or pasta.

Overlooking Aspen Woods Lake, Allora is a refreshing addition to the southwest, with a modern, Instagram-able aesthetic served alongside authentic homestyle Italian fare in the former Redwater Rustic Grille space. A Vintage Group restaurant, its philosophy is defined by a simple approach to dishes, handmade from ingredients that are locally sourced or imported from Italy.

The approachable and family-friendly menu offers the expected pizzas and pastas in addition to elevated entrees such as spicy Italian risotto and a 10-ounce prime striploin with truffle butter. The allure of the roomy restaurant lies in the fact that guests can make their visit as casual or as special as they like. Stop by for a quick rugola salad with limoncello vinaigrette on a weekday. Or linger longer on the weekend and share the house-made focaccia and aged prosciutto and figs with friends while sipping one of the many cocktail creations.

Gluten-free foodies need not shy away either, as Allora has a robust menu of options safe for gluten-sensitive and celiac guests. (All the equipment used in pasta-making is thoroughly sanitized and fitted with dedicated plates when making gluten-free pasta.)

The Italian essence is fully extended into the restaurant’s wine cellar where most by-thebottle offerings are regional specialties like Orvieto, Valpolicella or Barbera. The by-the-glass list leans heavily on Italy with a smattering of other international varietals to please any palate. —N.M.

326 Aspen Glen Landing S.W., 403-686-6731, allorarestaurant.com

alumni sandwiches

fOOd Sandwiches, from staple to artisanal. vibe

Bustling modern diner with a mixed crowd. Order this Hot-chicken sandwich, available in half or full spice.

knOw this You can get any sandwich on gluten-free bread for an additional $2.

average price $13 per sandwich.

This egalitarian addition to 17th Avenue S.W. adheres to a philosophy it calls “reckless gourmet” to offer casual, affordable fare bursting with flavour. Sandwiches come out fast and don’t offend the wallet. Wait times are short (when they exist at all) and people from different walks of life coexist inside the stylish, diner-esque space by Sarah Ward Interiors.

Too long has crowd-pleasing food been limited to bashful dishes that prize being serviceable over delightful. One visit to Alumni proves that casual food can be both inclusive and exceptional. There are always 15 sandwich options available, meaning there’s something for everyone — from the picky eater and adventurous sort to the calorie-conscious and decadent diner. By far the most popular item is the hot chicken rubbed in fiery spices and tempered with slaw, pickles and “comeback” sauce. Other more-than-worthy orders include the decadent chicken Parmesan and overstuffed veggie wrap with red-pepper chutney. Sandwiches come without sides and are enough to satiate one person, but it would be a shame to miss the selection of salads, snacks and sides, so come hungry. —C.G. 725 17 Ave. S.W., 403-455-7255, alumnisandwiches.com

Avenue Calgary .com 43
(below) Allora interior. (bottom) House-made focaccia. Owner Jeremy Milligan with Alumni’s hot-chicken sandwich.

chairman’s steakhOuse

In a restaurant economy where everyone seems to be zigging, Chairman’s Steakhouse is definitely a zag. Unabashedly swank, opulent and formal, this 192-seat restaurant in the southeast feels defiantly at odds with the casual dining wave that has swept much of Calgary.

Plush and luxurious chairs allow you to settle in for an evening of grown-up dining, surrounded by soft grey, gold, black and marble accents. There’s also a lounge, a private dining room plus two expansive patios that are perfect for sunny evenings.

annabelle's kitchen

When the space that used to be Anew Table in Marda Loop came up for grabs last spring, local restaurateur Leslie Echino knew it would make an ideal home for her vision of a perfect little neighbourhood Italian restaurant. And how right she was. Since opening in August, 2019, Echino has attracted an enviable stable of bona-fide regulars that span several demographic groups: business diners, parents with young kids, stylish couples and ladies who lunch.

Perhaps it’s Echino’s reasonable prices (mains hover around $20, wines by the glass around $11). Perhaps it’s executive chef Chris Dewling’s concise, uncomplicated menu of antipasti, pizza and pasta that showcases his ability to balance traditional preparations and ingredients with fresh and new flavours and techniques. (Think ravioli with winter squash, hazelnuts, crispy sage and brown butter.) Maybe it’s the small-but-mighty wine, beer and cocktail list, expertly curated by Echino to showcase the best of budget-friendly Italy. Or maybe it’s the room itself. Designed by McKinley Burkart, the 40-table space is feminine without being too frou-frou and is as comfortable and welcoming as the proverbial nonna’s kitchen, with its collector plates on the walls and seafoamgreen accent colours.





Mid-century modern village kitchen.

Order this Mozzarella, tomato and basil pizza (the litmus test for any Italian restaurant).

knOw this Annabelle’s also does takeout. Grab an Aperol spritz at the bar and chat with your neighbours while you wait.

average price $19 per pizza or pasta.

Taken all together, the restaurant strikes the exact balance Echino (who also owns Blink Restaurant & Bar and Bar Annabelle) was going for — a neighbourhood gathering place where folks can come whether they’re dressed up or down to enjoy high-quality food and drinks without breaking the bank. —J.H.

3574 Garrison Gate S.W., 403-454-0268, annabelleskitchen.ca

The professional wait staff is attentive without being overbearing, knowledgeable without being condescending. Yet despite all the formality, the restaurant doesn’t suffer from stuffiness.

Chairman’s serves the best cuts of Canadian Prime beef, with a full complement of rich sides, including pomme purée, asparagus and cauliflower au gratin. Salads include a Waldorf and a Caesar (which is in the running for best in the city), and you can top your steak with the likes of a Hennessy peppercorn jus or a foie gras-mushroom sauce. There are a variety of other signature mains like a butter-poached Sunterra pork tenderloin and plenty of hot and cold appetizers. And with an extensive wine list, plus expertly prepared classic cocktails, you certainly won’t go thirsty.

Located on Mahogany Lake in Westman Village, the restaurant is the brainchild of Jay Westman, chairman and CEO of Jayman Built, in partnership with Vintage Group. While the restaurant holds obvious appeal to community residents, this is undoubtedly special-occasion, destination dining that will draw patrons from all quadrants of the city. —J.H. 2251 Mahogany Blvd. S.E., 587-291-9898, chairmans.ca

44 avenueMARCH.20 • best New
(below left) Cara Cara orange salad with red onion, pine nuts and pecorino. (below) Annabelle’s interior. (bottom) “Everybody knows” pizza with mozzarella, tomato and basil.

knOw this Enjoy live local music every Friday and Saturday in

cOmery blOck

fOOd Tennessee barbecue and bourbon.

vibe Welcoming and lively with communal tables bathed in warm red light. Order this Hot chicken.

knOw this Half-price meats after 10 p.m. daily.

average price $13 meat by the half-pound, $5 per side

Co-owners Jared and Aja Kichula added a Tennessee twist to Calgary’s barbecue scene when they opened Comery Block in July, 2019, a sister restaurant to Hayden Block in Kensington. The differences between Comery’s West-Tennessee approach and Hayden Block’s take on Texas barbecue lie largely in the rubs and house-made sauces, along with the wood used in the smoking. Using the harder, Ontario-sourced hickory, rather than the apple wood used at Hayden, Comery’s meats benefit from a deeper smoke, infused into fall-apart-tender brisket, ribs and turkey over the course of 10 to 14 hours. The deep smoke is especially notable in Comery’s tender pork dishes

and in its Nashville hot chicken. Sides include southern favourites such as grits, collard greens and yam casserole.

While whiskies of the world fill the drink menu, bourbon is king. It’s offered neat, on the rocks or in cocktails designed to make the spirit more approachable for the uninitiated.

Inspired further by Nashville nightlife, Comery Block recently announced that a music venue is taking shape in the basement to further amplify the dynamic vibe. From the corner lot on 17th Avenue S.W., which previously housed Fiore, this Calgary take on Tennessee eats offers an overarching energy evident even from the sidewalk. —N.K. 638 17 Ave. S.W., 403-453-7636, comeryblock.com

Avenue Calgary .com 45
fOOd Elevated steakhouse dining. vibe Rat Pack swank. Order this 36-ounce porterhouse for two, but start with the tiny foie gras sandwich with Saskatoon-berry jam on brioche. the lounge. average price $56 per entree. (top) Chairman’s interior. (middle) The 36-ounce porterhouse for two with asparagus and potato rösti. (bottom) Chairman’s interior. (below) Comery Block platters are meant to be shared.

flOres & pine

Named to pay homage to the surrounding trees and for the “first lady of the Stampede” Flores LaDue, Flores & Pine opened in the summer of 2019. The space was previously occupied by the Bears Den, which true to its name, was all dark wood panelling and very masculine in tone. While the panelling and some of the custom bronze reliefs were maintained in the redesign by Amanda Hamilton Interior Design, the space is now swathed in white and feels fresh and welcoming to everyone. Circular banquettes and tiled green accent walls add visual interest. The restaurant has also been overhauled to create private event space that is sure to be in high demand, including a banquet hall, patio and an upstairs bridal preparation suite.

The attention to detail in the design is indicative of the passion the new owners, Kristin Romeril and Mahyar Khosravi, have put into revitalizing this Bearspaw institution.

The Venus Century espresso maker is one of only 100 made by Victoria Arduino, with the first in the series owned by the Pope. The kitchen also features a first-in-Alberta Lainox Neo that allows for baking, proofing, blast chilling and shock freezing (a process that results in smaller ice crystals, which protects the consistency of the product being frozen) and more all in one Wi-Fi connected machine. But it is all in service of the overall dining experience where the great space is the backdrop to a creative and comforting seasonal menu that is sure to delight. —K.L. 254028 Bearspaw Rd., 403-241-7611, floresandpine.com

fOOd Contemporary Canadian. vibe Modern country club casual.

Order this The fish feature is flown in direct from Iceland, from ocean to your plate in as little as 36 hours.

knOw this Sunday brunch ($49) has a buffet, omelette station and served hors d’oeuvres. Kids 12 and under eat for their age times $2. average price $35 per entree.

• best New 46 avenueMARCH.20
(clockwise from bottom right) Crispy fried Brussels sprouts; braised short ribs with smoked-cheddar mash; cauliflower risotto with Brussels sprouts and cashew cream; pistacio honey cake.

With a selection of over 100 vintages of wine to choose from, Next Door Wine Bar offers an intimate setting to discover a world of wines. Enjoy a taste of Tuscany, Veneto, Argentina, France, Canada, US or more as you explore our wine selection. Our modern decor paired with an abundance of natural light creates an intimate ambiance.

With a range of small plates and shareable options, we have a little taste of something for every palate. Arancini, Caprese Salad, and our Gnocchi Gorgonzola are among the guest favourites. All of our ingredients are locally sourced, and our menu items have been carefully crafted to pair with several of our wine selections. Our servers will offer suggestions on the best red or white vintage to go with every dish on the menu, ensuring you always have a satisfying experience.

8330 Macleod Trail SE. nextdoorwinebar.ca

Avenue Calgary .com 47
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mOOse and pOnchO

Mexico City-expat Miguel

Cornejo spent 20 years working across a range of culinary styles in kitchens across Canada before opening Moose and Poncho, a taqueria like no other in Calgary. Putting to use his diverse arsenal of kitchen skills and respect for the recipes he grew up with, Cornejo’s food is authentic and next-level delicious.

While the Moose and Poncho menu is seasonal — mole and al pastor entrees in the summer, hearty soups like birria in the winter — it’s the trifecta of fragrant staple tacos that really make the welcoming counter worth

visiting year round. The chorizo rojo (red sausage), chicharrón (crispy pressed pork) and suadero (a smooth, thin cut of beef) are made from scratch with special attention paid to let flavours emerge over time. Meats are prepared in small batches to ensure optimal freshness and prevent waste, as are the daily agua frescas and rotating selection of handmade salsas.

Stopping by Moose and Poncho feels like being let in on a secret. Located inside Chinatown’s Far East Shopping Centre, the room’s bold colours are worthy of the menu’s explosive flavours. —C.G. 18, 132 3 Ave. S.E., 403-452-1846

P.E.I. mussels and fries in a French-Indian curry broth.

fOOd Tacos and homestyle Mexican entrees.

vibe Real-deal Mexican taqueria.

Order this Chicharrón tacos made with pork shoulder (rather than the standard rinds or belly).

knOw this There are between four and six options at the salsa bar on any given day. Try them all.

average price $4 per taco.

fOOd Modern bistro fare.

vibe Contemporary but cozy. Order this P.E.I. mussels and fries in French-Indian curry broth.

knOw this For the butcher’s cut steak, the kitchen often chooses unusual cuts for added interest.

average price $24 per entree.


Even though suburban eating is improving in Calgary, the southwest community of Oakridge isn’t where most of us would expect to find one of the city’s most appealing new restaurants. Purlieu (the word means “the area near or surrounding a place”) may be located in a suburban strip mall, but the quality of the food rivals anything anywhere in the city. Owned and operated by veteran restaurateur Jason Armstrong (formerly of Bistro 2210) and chef Eric Mah, Purlieu offers an eclectic bistro menu that draws on contemporary influences and is good enough to draw out residents of every corner of the city. The dining room is pleasant but unfussy, giving Mah space to exceed the expectations of first-time guests. Purlieu’s menu is a mix of small plates and a few classic entrees — two or three small plates per person makes for a satisfying meal and also offers more opportunity to sample bold flavour combinations like Humboldt calamari with redpepper sauce, chili flakes, red onion and arugula, and the chipotle emulsion and goat cheese crumble that accompany the charred caulilini. —E.C.B. 3109 Palliser Dr. S.W., 403-280-7474, purlieucalgary.ca

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• best New
(top) (bottom) Purlieu interior. Moose and Poncho interior.


Avenue Calgary .com 49

best OVerAll


The elegant, airy and casually cool interior of this hidden gem in the Manchester industrial area is the perfect complement to what executive chef and co-owner Rogelio Herrera does in the kitchen. His dishes are influenced by Mediterranean, Asian and Latin American flavours and enhanced by a commitment to using the best local and seasonal ingredients available. Paired with his uncanny skill at making dishes look as good as they taste, the result is a restaurant that is a paragon of both reliability and excellence. —J.H.

220 42 Ave. S.E., 403-287-9255, alloydining.com


Fine global fusion.


Upscale easygoing chic. Order this Lamb chops with arugula pesto, mascarpone polenta, sautéed kale and sour-cherry gastrique

knOw this There’s plenty of free parking and the location is more convenient than you think. average price $40 per entree.

50 avenueMARCH.20
(left) Ahi tuna ceviche with passion fruit, serrano peppers, cherry tomatoes and potato chips.

bar vOn der fels

When Bar Von Der Fels (BVDF) opened in 2016, the intimacy of the tiny room and sheer creativity of the limited menu were as exciting as the off-beat by-the-glass pours offered at the bar. Since then, BVDF has only gotten better. Chef Douglas King joined the team in 2018, bringing even more consistency and adventurousness to an oft-changing menu of small plates that lives in harmony with the wines. —E.C.B. 1005A 1 St. S.W., 587-349-2656, barvonderfels.com


Small plates to pair with wines. vibe Secret hangout. Order this

The menu changes regularly, but any version of chef King’s Hasselback potato is a winner.

knOw this BVDF is closed on Sundays, when it transforms into Pizza Face, an old-school Italian pizzeria pop-up. average price $20 per small plate.


fOOd Contemporary Korean.

vibe Sleek dining lounge with cross-cultural sophistication.

Order this Crispy tofu with pork belly, sesame-maple sautéed kimchee and citrus aioli.

knOw this Large plates are large. Come extra-hungry or with a group for the best experience.

average price $30 per entree.

At Anju, the tradition of Korean drinking culture dazzles alongside the innovative flare that has earned chef Roy Oh his reputation over the past 11 years. The ample menu complements any drink and is a dance between sweet and umami on a crunchy and tender bedrock of grilled, fried, fermented and raw delights. Although the restaurant had to permanently close its 17th Avenue S.W. location earlier this year due to a water main break, its owners, Concorde Group announced they will find a new venue for Anju as we went to press. We look forward to its return with bated breath. —C.G. anju.ca

Avenue Calgary .com 51
(above left) BVDF interior. (middle) Chef Douglas King with plated creations. (right) Hasselback potatoes with Fogo Island crab. Anju’s crispy tofu with pork belly, sesame-maple sautéed kimchee and citrus aioli is a menu mainstay.

fOOd Contemporary comfort food.


Mid-century plantsand-macramé hipster rec room.

Order this

Grilled farm chicken with chicken sausage, dill gravy and fries.

knOw this

The bathrooms are stocked with ultracool Bridgette-branded matchboxes that you’ll want to take regardless of whether or not you smoke.

average price $15 (small plates), $37 (large plates).

(clockwise from bottom) Grilled lamb sirloin with date-and-coffee jam; ricotta dumplings; wood-grilled carrots with chili dressing, spiced almonds and tahini.

bridgette bar

With exposed brick, mid-century-shabbychic furnishings and a buzzy vibe, walking into Bridgette feels like arriving at the ultimate loft party. Except this party has chef JP Pedhirney and his team serving up family-style platters of wood-fired, grilled and roasted meats and deeply flavourful veg drizzled with lively sauces. It’s food that’s comforting but still exciting, like the best marriages. —S.A.

739 10 Ave. S.W., 403-700-0191 (text message only), bridgettebar.com


calcutta cricket club

calcutta Cricket Club serves tangy small plates and large fragrant curries in a room that melds old-world class and vibrant modernity. Bring a group for rich butter chicken paired with mango-andgin cocktails, or take a date to the secluded side patio for kati rolls and local craft beer. Either way, a meal here always feels like an event. —C.G. 340 17 Ave. S.W., 403-719-1555, calcuttacricketclub.com

fOOd Classic French bistro.

vibe Sophisticated, yet homey.

Order this Literally called the “signature dish,” Chef Moussu’s Alberta beef tenderloin is topped with foie gras ravioli.

knOw this Cassis regularly holds special dinners so Moussu can exercise his creative muscle. average price $41 per entree.

fOOd Bengali-inspired modern Indian.

vibe Country-club dining lounge plucked from a Wes Anderson daydream. Order this Tandoori-spiced chicken kati rolls.

knOw this Recently installed sound-dampening panels make the dining room feel more intimate. average price $19 per curry, $13 per small plate.

cassis bistrO

As co-owners of one of Calgary’s most beloved French restaurants, Gilles and Andrea Brassart and chef Dominique Moussu take great pains to offer guests an authentically French experience. From the famed beef tartare to the ever-changing plat du jour, these exquisitely prepared dishes are made from the heart, transporting the diner to the French countryside with every bite. —E.C.B. 105, 2505 17 Ave. S.W., 403-262-0036, thecassisbistro.ca

Avenue Calgary .com 53
• best
(near right) The interior was inspired by 1960s Indian social clubs. (far right) Kati rolls filled with paneer, tandoori chicken and beef keema
Beef tenderloin with mashed fingerling potatoes topped with fois gras ravioli and shaved truffles, served with bone marrow and green salad.


charcut rOast hOuse

Celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2020, Charcut endures as a must-try Calgary restaurant. Co-chefs John Jackson and Connie DeSousa have set the local bar for housemade comfort food, with a menu dominated by cured, grilled and roasted meats. There’s plenty of fish and vegetarian fare as well, but at its heart, Charcut remains a room in which to sit back and indulge in a meaty, meaty meal. —E.C.B. 101, 899 Centre St. S.W., 403-984-2180, charcut.com


Elevated comfort food. vibe Warm and friendly. Order this Charcuterie board — do not leave the building without trying the pig’s head mortadella.

knOw this Charcut still has one of the best (and quickest) lunch deals in town with its $16 to $25 “lunch all at once.”

average price $30 per entree.

54 avenueMARCH.20 • best
(below) A selection of Charcut’s hearty fare, including house-cured beef-heart kielbasa, pig’s head mortadella and roasted- and pickled-beet salad with goat's cheese, mint and pecans.

cOttO Italian cOmfOrt fOOd

Naples-born chef Giuseppe Di Gennaro built his reputation as a fine-dining chef for more than 20 years at his fondly remembered restaurant Capo (and others). At Cotto he ably demonstrates that when the white tablecloths are removed his food still shines. His arancini has no rivals and choosing between the substantial Roman flatbreads and timeless pastas will break your heart. Thankfully, the all-are-welcome atmosphere, the easy-on-thewallet wine list and genuine, hospitable service make Cotto a place worth visiting often. —C.G. 314D 10 St. N.W., 587-356-4088, cottoyyc.com

fOOd Italian comfort food.


Unassuming neighbourhood restaurant with a pinch of rustic charm. Order this

The Italian Job, a chef’s choice three-course feast of an appetizer, entree and dessert.

knOw this

A $16 wine and pasta special is offered Tuesday to Thursday and Sunday from 5 to 6 p.m. average price $25 per pasta.

fOreign cOncept

Asia is an enormous continent full of different flavours that come together in perfect harmony at chef Duncan Ly’s relaxed restaurant. Ly’s kitchen takes familiar items like beef bulgogi and steamed buns and creatively transforms them into brand new dishes with local Alberta ingredients and flavours from other parts of Asia. The food is thoughtful and fun, and perhaps most importantly, always a little bit surprising. —E.C.B. 1011 1 St. S.W., 403-719-7288, foreignconcept.ca


Pan-Asian fusion.

vibe Modern Asian chic.

Order this Alberta trout cha ca la vong.

knOw this

For a more casual bite, stop into Takori, Ly’s Asian-fusion taco shop in the former Foreign Concept lounge.

average price $31 per entree.

Avenue Calgary .com 55
(above left) Cotto's housemade breads. (middle) Chef Giuseppe Di Gennaro with his signature arancini (right) Cotto is an ideal spot for a drink before a show at the Jubilee Auditorium. Alberta trout cha ca la vong, with yogurt, scallion noodles and chili shrimp paste.


The convivial atmosphere at this Mission staple is such a draw for the 40-plus sociable set that it would be easy to dismiss the food as a secondary attraction. It’s not. The Caracciolo family has been involved in Calgary’s food scene for more than 40 years, never wavering in their commitment to serving the same authentic Italian dishes you’d find in matriarch Mama Cathy’s kitchen —J.H. 2224 4 St. S.W., 403-263-5535, mercatogourmet.com

fOOd Contemporary Italian.

vibe Buzzy, see-andbe-seen market restaurant. Order this Arrosto misto (family-style mixed grill).

knOw this Mama Cathy Caracciolo still makes gnocchi by hand for the restaurant using the same recipe and technique she learned from her own mama.

average price $32 (primi), $45 (secondi).

Octopus carpaccio with charred cauliflower.

56 • best

mOdel milk

This eclectic restaurant serving Southern-influenced comfort food is a perennial list-maker, and it feels as fresh today as it did when it opened in 2011 thanks to its commitment to creativity and innovation with a continually evolving menu. The multilevel space was once a 1930s dairy of the same name, and the room — designed by Frank Architecture & Interiors — honours the building’s industrial history with exposed brick walls, a concrete floor, steel beams and playful touches like chandeliers made from milk bottles. —J.H. 308 17 Ave. S.W., 403-265-7343, modelmilk.ca


fOOd Eclectic small plates.

vibe Big city wine bar.

Order this The menu changes regularly, but the charred cabbage with mimolette and jalapeno salad cream has been a long-term keeper.

knOw this The pancake soufflé on the breakfast menu may be the best pancake in the whole city.

average price $18 per small plate.


Eclectic, upscale comfort food.

vibe Playfully hip and energetic. Order this The “Big Milk” burger with American cheese, pickles, special sauce and housecut fries.

knOw this The iconic black Manhattan is one of the sexiest drinks in the city. average price $17 (small plates), $32 (large plates).

pigeonhole feels like a cosmopolitan hideaway, complete with cool decor and comfortable banquettes perfect for gathering at with a date or a group of hungry friends. The intensely flavourful small plates can be ordered as snacks to go with selections from the quirky wine list or you can piece them together to create a full-on feast of beautifully composed and often unpredictable creations. —E.C.B. 306 17 Ave. S.W., 403-4524694, pigeonholeyyc.ca

Avenue Calgary .com 57
(left) The “Big Milk” burger with house-cut fries is a classic. (below left) Sharing plates in the stylish dining room. (below) Charred cabbage with mimolette cheese.


fOOd Elevated taqueria.

vibe Oaxaca by way of Echo Park. Order this Pollo rostizado (adobo roasted chicken).

knOw this You could have your latenight cravings delivered by DoorDash, but then you’d miss “reverse happy hour” from 10 p.m. to close.

average price $4 per taco, $26 per entree.

river café

Located in one of the city’s most idyllic settings at Prince’s Island Park, River Café has remained relevant for almost 30 years by offering top tier regional cuisine made with locally sourced ingredients. Head chef Ross Bowles has even phased out things like pepper, citrus and olive oil to offer a truly Canadian culinary experience, as exemplified by his creative and impeccably presented dishes. While the restaurant is currently closed due to City of Calgary flood-mitigation work, it will reopen on April 4. —E.C.B.

25 Prince’s Island Park, 403-261-7670, river-cafe.com

fOOd Canadiana fine dining.

vibe Woodsy elegance. Order this The chef’s tasting menu. knOw this In the name of environmental responsibility, the restaurant no longer uses cling film in the kitchen, using reusable containers and cheesecloth in its place.

average price $42 per entree.

native tOngues taqueria

Native Tongues’ refined-but-rustic tacos are always a good bet for brunch, lunch, dinner and late night. That alone makes it worth a visit, but the reason we can’t stop coming back is the playful, modern touches on the now-legendary “hamburguesa,” takeout-only burrito, fresh-baked doughnuts and cold-brew cocktails. Few restaurants balance dependable mainstays with excursions outside their namesake cuisine so well. —C.G.

235 12 Ave. S.W., 403-263-9444, nativetongues.ca

Rainbow trout with spaghetti squash, tomatoes,

58 avenueMARCH.20
(below) The Native Tongues interior has an authentic Mexican feel. (bottom) Adobo roasted chicken with refritos, roasted potatoes and Mexican rice. (top) Chickenliver parfait on toasted brioche with Okanagan fruit. (middle) Chef Ross Bowles. (bottom)
• best
espelette and crispy lonza

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Avenue Calgary .com 59 Raise your glass and awaken your senses at Bar Nineteen Twelve, the Calgary Stampede’s newest hidden gem. Featuring one-of-a-kind, hand-crafted cocktails and upscale culinary creations, be prepared to spoil your senses in our lavish restaurant and cocktail lounge. Reserve now on OpenTable.ca DATE: Jan 23 2020 Produced by 1005 - 11 Ave SW Calgary, AB T2R 0G1 Phone: 403.287.9300 Fax: 403.287.9915 FILE NAMES ARE FOR INTERNAL USE ONLY THIS FILE IS PRINTED IN 4 COLOR File Name TC-21152 Avenue 1/2 Page Ad - March Issue v3.indd Publication Avenuew Insertion March 2020 Client Trico Homes Size 7" x 4.6” no bleeds Fonts used Helvetica Neue LT, Gotham Picture info Producer BM Revision # Reference # Page #1 of file DO NOT ALTER THIS ARTWORK WITHOUT CONTACTING TRICO HOMES Find out more at tricohomes.com 2004 - 2019
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shOkunin Izakaya

Chef Darren MacLean (the guy who made it to the end on The Final Table on Netflix) is a huge fan of the Tokyo izakaya scene and Shokunin embodies this passion. The charcoal used to grill the yakitori and kushiyaki is authentic binchotan, the menu is ever changing to accommodate special ingredients and the bar is well-stocked with pure junmai-style sake and Japanese whiskies. Are we in Tokyo yet? —S.A.

2016 4 St. S.W., 403-229-3444, shokuninyyc.ca


vibe Tokyo underground. Order this Anything off the yakitori menu.

knOw this

The Okami Kasu beer served here is a signature product created in collaboration with local craft brewery Ol’ Beautiful that is infused with sake kasu, a byproduct of sake brewing. average price $4 (piece items), $18 (plates).


fOOd Country casual Italian. vibe

Your best Italian friend’s home where everyone is welcome.

Order this Bucatini puttanesca (loose translation: “unsavoury lady” pasta).

knOw this Tavernetta offers catering so you can host an Italian feast in your own home.

average price $23 per entree.

Negronis on tap, house wine by the litre and a bocce court in the backyard — what more do you need to know about Tavernetta? Of course, there’s the rustic Italian menu, all served family-style, that’s so authentic you feel like you’re a guest in a Tuscan home. And there’s the casual but totally competent style of service, which automatically puts diners at ease. Set in an Arts and Crafts-style home on Edmonton Trail N.E., Tavernetta is definitely not your typical restaurant and that’s just the way we like it. —J.H. 1002 Edmonton Tr. N.E., 403-250-8894, tavernettayyc.ca

Modern Japanese izakaya
60 • best
(left) Bison tataki with yuzu kosho pickled onions and strong ponzu (below) Shokunin’s interior has a Tokyo-underground vibe. Tavernetta meatball, with fonduta cheese and tomato sauce.
Avenue Calgary .com 61 CYAN MAGENTA YELLOW BLACK 604 988 1407 weareif.com client Hy’s docket HYS-18-032 item Avenue Calgary Ad size 7.875" x 4.8125" insertion date Jul 2019 artwork due 24 May 2019 CALGARY’S ONLY URBAN WINERY & TASTING BAR Experience the winery without leaving the city. Enjoy the best grapes from around the globe, as you sample and sip on our wines made right here in Calgary. 544 - 38A Ave SE Calgary AB | 1-403-245-0449 cityandcountrywinery.com


Apillar of Calgary’s elevated dining landscape, a night at Teatro is marked by professional service, fantastic wine and spectacular food. Located in a historic bank building, this is where to go for a special occasion dinner, an impressive business lunch, a pre- or post-theatre meal or if you just want to treat yourself to a glass of wine at the long marble-topped bar. —E.C.B. 200 8 Ave. S.E., 403-290-1012, teatro.ca

fOOd Mediterraneaninspired elegant dining.


Opulence, with a touch of whimsy.

Order this

The lobster and scallop lasagna, a menu mainstay.

knOw this

Don’t skip dessert!

The tiramisu is one of owner Dario Berloni’s Italian family recipes.

average price

$40 per entree.

62 avenueMARCH.20 • best OVerAll
Linguine nero with squid, prawns and uni emulsion.

We’re on a mission. It’s why we opened our first coffeehouse in 1991. We Certified coffee. With our roaster, we strive to

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Relax at Hotel Arts poolside, with soul-warming treats from our award-winning restaurants. Poolside is serviced by both Raw Bar and Yellow Door Bistro.

HAPPY HOUR 4-6 PM hotelarts.ca


Avenue Calgary .com 63
in every cup.


ten fOOt


Eating your veggies is easy at this inviting and coolly casual restaurant that coaxes serious flavour out of the lowly carrot and its ilk. And while vegetables are a strong focus, meatatarians ought not to fear they’ll go hungry as there is a small but mighty selection of fish, chicken and beef dishes that are great on their own, or as supplemental protein for the table. —J.H.

1209 1 St. S.W., 403-475-5537, tenfoothenry.com

shiki menya

This bustling Bridgeland restaurant is always busy and that’s because the ramen bowls are so bodaciously flavourful and consistently delicious it’s almost impossible not to crave them. Add to that the super-cool staff who work the room with masterful efficiency, the funky minimalist vibe and the fact that the restaurant only serves approximately 150 bowls of ramen per day to maintain the integrity of the tonkotsu (pork) broth, and you’ll understand the reason people line up here.


827 1 Ave. N.E., 403-454-2722, shikimenya.ca

fOOd Modern Japanese ramen.

vibe Busy, noisy, slurpy.

Order this Chili goma ramen.

knOw this

There’s a lineup to get in almost all the

time but it moves fast. Just write your name on the clipboard inside the door and wait until they call you.

average price $13 per ramen bowl (cash or debit only).

fOOd Modern and vegetableforward, served family-style.


Humming with pretty people and progressive conversations.

Order this Brussels sprouts with ponzu, bonito flakes and crispy vermicelli.

knOw this Family-style brunch is offered on weekends and they take reservations.

average price $19 per entree.

una pizza + wine

Now a staple of Calgary’s everexpanding pizza scene, Una Pizza + Wine has maintained its musttry status for the past decade. With a kale Caesar salad that rivals the signature thin crust pizzas in citywide reputation, the “Californitalian” menu and cozy hangout vibe attracts packed houses nightly. Una’s excellence extends next door, with sister

restaurant Bread and Circus Trattoria serving its delicious Italian cuisine in the space behind the Una Takeaway counter. Even further back, the 20-seat Frenchie Wine Bar pours from an eclectic wine list, offering a perfect bookend on either side of a meal. —N.K. 618 17 Ave. S.W., 403-453-1183, unapizzeria.com

fOOd Californiainfluenced pizza, pasta and salads.


Cozy and casual neighbourhood hangout.

Order this Kale Caesar salad and Beltline pizza.

knOw this Purchasing a weekly feature sends a meal to a Calgary youth in need through Mealshare. average price $22 per pizza or entree.

64 avenueMARCH.20
• best
Margherita pizza and kale Caesar salad. Chili goma ramen with chopped pork, veggies, peanuts and cashews. (top) Living plants create a welcoming interior. (bottom) Henry salad with crispy shiitake mushrooms. + b&c & frenchie

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Avenue Calgary .com 65 Cambridge Manor Opening June 2020 Introducing Cambridge Manor
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best BaRbecue

Comery Block 638 17 Ave. S.W., 403-453-7636, comeryblock.com

Hayden Block Smoke & Whiskey 1136 Kensington Rd. N.W., 403-283-3021, haydenblockyyc.com

Palomino Smokehouse 109 7 Ave. S.W., 403-532-1911, thepalomino.ca

best CHain

Cactus Club Cafe Multiple locations, cactusclubcafe.com

Earl’s Multiple locations, earls.ca

Joey Multiple locations, joeyrestaurants.com

best ChiNese

Great Taste Restaurant

594 64 Ave. N.E., 403-275-6577; and 123 2 Ave. S.E., 403-265-9880; greattastecalgary.com

Silver Dragon Restaurant 106 3 Ave. S.E., 403-264-5326, silverdragoncalgary.com

T.Pot China Bistro 100, 9650 Harvest Hills Blvd. N.E., 403-532-3982, tasteofasiagroup.ca

best fasT CaSual

Alumni Sandwiches

725 17 Ave. S.W., 403-455-7255, alumnisandwiches.com

Clive Burger 736 17 Ave. S.W., 403-229-9224, cliveburger.com

Cluck N Cleaver

1511 14 St. S.W., 403-266-2067; and 100, 917 85 St. S.W., 403-910-0052; cluckncleaver.com

best freNch

Cassis Bistro

105, 2505 17 Ave. S.W., 403-262-0036, thecassisbistro.ca

Q Haute Cuisine 100 La Caille Pl. S.W., 403-262-5554, qhautecuisine.com

Rouge Restaurant 1240 8 Ave. S.E., 403-531-2767, rougecalgary.com

best fUsion

Anju (currently closed), anju.ca

Foreign Concept 1011 1 St. S.W., 403-719-7288, foreignconcept.ca

Lulu Bar 510 17 Ave. S.W., 403-519-0444 (text message only), lulubar.ca

even mOre Of the best places tO eat. read mOre abOut them Online at avenueCalgary.cOm where yOu can sign up fOr Our weekly fOOd & drink newsletter fOr free servings Of great dining tips right tO yOur inbOx.

best INdian

Calcutta Cricket Club

340 17 Ave. S.W., 403-719-1555, calcuttacricketclub.com

Masala Bhavan

33A, 4604 37 St. S.W., 403-460-4535, masalabhavan.com

Moti Mahal

1805 14 St. S.W., 403-228-9990, motimahal.ca

best ItaLian

Bread and Circus


616 17 Ave. S.W., 403-476-3615, breadandcircusyyc.com


401 12 Ave. S.E., 403-264-6046, cardinale.ca

Centini Restaurant & Lounge

160 8 Ave. S.E., 403-269-1600, centini.com

Cotto Italian Comfort Food

314D 10 St. N.W., 587-356-4088, cottoyyc.com

La Brezza Ristorante 990 1 Ave. N.E., 403-262-6230, labrezza.ca


2224 4 St. S.W., 403-263-5535, mercatogourmet.com; and Mercato West, 5000, 873 85 St. S.W., 403-263-6996, mercatowest.com

Posto Pizzeria and Bar

1014 8 St. S.W., 403-263-4876, posto.ca


1002 Edmonton Tr. N.E., 403-250-8894, tavernettayyc.ca

Teatro 200 8 Ave. S.E., 403-290-1012, teatro.ca

Villa Firenze 610 1 Ave. N.E., 403-264-4297, villafirenze.ca


2, 2116 4 St. S.W., 587-353-2656, anejo.ca

Moose and Poncho 18, 132 3 Ave. S.E., 403-452-1846

Native Tongues

Taqueria 235 12 Ave. S.W., 403-263-9444, nativetongues.ca

Double Zero CF Chinook Centre, 403-457-7677, doublezeropizza.ca

Posto Pizzeria and Bar 1014 8 St. S.W., 403-263-4876, posto.ca

Una Pizza + Wine 618 17 Ave. S.W., 403-453-1183, unapizzeria.com

66 avenueMARCH.20 • best in
best meXican
best piZZa

Fine Chinese Cuisine Since 1966

Large selection of Dim Sum (Calgary only) served daily from trolley carts Extensive menu, live seafood, Cantonese & Szechuan dishes

Lunch, Dinner

Open 7 days a week and all holidays Take out, delivery and catering services

106 - 3 Avenue SE • Chinatown 403-264-5326 silverdragoncalgary.com

109 Spray Avenue, Banff 403-762-3939 silverdragonbanff.ca

Avenue Calgary .com 67
Untitled-1 1 1/31/2020 11:26:26 AM

best SteakHOuse

Hy’s Steakhouse & Cocktail Bar

The Core Shopping Centre, 8th Avenue and 3rd Street S.W., 403-663-3363, hyssteakhouse.com

Modern Steak 107 10A St. N.W., 403-670-6873; and 100 8 Ave. S.E., 403-244-3600; modernsteak.ca

Vintage Chophouse 320 11 Ave. S.W., 403-262-7262, vintagechophouse.com

best tHai

Jurree’s Thai Place 2055 16 Ave. S.W., 403-264-6477, jurreesthaiplace.com

Thai Sa-on 351 10 Ave. S.W., 403-264-3526, thai-sa-on.com

White Elephant Thai Cuisine

1808 19 St. N.E., 403-457-1172, whiteelephantcuisinecalgary.com

best vegetaRian

The Allium 211A 12 Ave. S.W., 403-264-5416, theallium.ca

The Coup 924 17 Ave. S.W., 403-541-1041, thecoup.ca

The Dandelion 1048 8 St. S.E., 403-475-3426, thedandelionyyc.ca



Pho Dau Bo

110, 4909 17 Ave. S.E., 403-272-5160, phodaubovietnamese.com

Pure Kitchen & Bar 100, 815 8 Ave. S.W., 403-475-1899, purekitchenbar.com

Tamarind Vietnamese Grill and Noodle House 106, 1111 6 Ave. S.W., 403-262-6644

best Intimate Experience

Bar Annabelle

109A 8 Ave. S.W., 403-457-9884, barannabelle.com

Bar Von Der Fels

1005A 1 St. S.W., 587-349-2656, barvonderfels.com

Fleur de Sel

2, 2015 4 St. S.W., 403-228-9764, fleurdeselbrasserie.com




Hayden Block Smoke & Whiskey

1136 Kensington Rd. N.W., 403-283-3021, haydenblockyyc.com

National (10th Avenue S.W. and 17th Avenue S.W. locations) 341 10 Ave. S.W., 403-4742739; and 550 17 Ave. S.W., 403-229-0226; ntnl.ca

U & Me Restaurant 201, 233 Centre St. S.W., 403-264-5988, uandme-restaurant.com

best See & Be Seen

Bridgette Bar

739 10 Ave. S.W., 403-700-0191 (text message only), bridgettebar.com

Lulu Bar 510 17 Ave. S.W., 403-519-0444 (text message only), lulubar.ca

Pigeonhole 306 17 Ave. S.W., 403-452-4694, pigeonholeyyc.ca

best urban Escape

Bow Valley Ranche Restaurant

15979 Bow Bottom Tr. S.E., 403-476-1310, bvrrestaurant.com

The Lake House

747 Lake Bonavista Dr. S.E., 403-225-3939, lakehousecalgary.com

Sky 360 Restaurant & Lounge 101 9 Ave. S.W., 403-532-7966, sky360.ca

Avenue’s writers and editors are occasionally invited to experience restaurants and dining activities as a guest, including some restaurants in this section. Neither complementary experiences nor advertising are required for coverage in Avenue. Neither companies that advertise nor those that provide other incentives are promised editorial coverage, nor do they have the opportunity to review or approve stories before publication.


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• best CaTegoRy
68 avenueMARCH.20

ResTaurantS & where to find them

The Allium 211A 12 Ave. S.W., 403-264-5416, theallium.ca

Allora Everyday Italian 326 Aspen Glen Landing S.W., 403-686-6731, allorarestaurant.com

Alloy 220 42 Ave. S.E., 403-287-9255, alloydining.com

Alumni Sandwiches

725 17 Ave. S.W., 403-455-7255, alumnisandwiches. com


2, 2116 4 St. S.W., 587-353-2656, anejo.ca

Anju (currently closed) anju.ca

Annabelle’s Kitchen

3574 Garrison Gate S.W., 403-454-0268, annabelleskitchen.ca

Bar Annabelle 109A 8 Ave. S.W., 403-457-9884, barannabelle.com

Bar Von Der Fels 1005A 1 St. S.W., 587-349-2656, barvonderfels.com

Bow Valley Ranche Restaurant

15979 Bow Bottom Tr. S.E., 403-476-1310, bvrrestaurant.com

Bread and Circus


616 17 Ave. S.W., 403-476-3615, breadandcircusyyc. com

Bridgette Bar 739 10 Ave. S.W., 403-700-0191 (text message only), bridgettebar.com

Cactus Club Cafe

Multiple locations, cactusclubcafe.com

Calcutta Cricket Club 340 17 Ave. S.W., 403-719-1555, calcuttacricketclub. com

Cardinale 401 12 Ave. S.E., 403-264-6046, cardinale.ca

Cassis Bistro 105, 2505 17 Ave. S.W., 403-262-0036, thecassisbistro.ca

Centini Restaurant & Lounge 160 8 Ave. S.E., 403-269-1600, centini.com

Chairman’s Steakhouse 2251 Mahogany Blvd. S.E., 587-291-9898, chairmans.ca

Flores & Pine 254028 Bearspaw Rd., 403-241-7611, floresandpine.com

Foreign Concept

1011 1 St. S.W., 403-719-7288, foreignconcept.ca


2224 4 St. S.W., 403-263-5535, mercatogourmet. com; and Mercato West, 5000, 873 85 St. S.W., 403-263-6996, mercatowest.com

Model Milk

Posto Pizzeria and Bar

1014 8 St. S.W., 403-263-4876, posto.ca

Pure Kitchen & Bar

100, 815 8 Ave. S.W., 403-475-1899, purekitchenbar.com

Tavernetta 1002 Edmonton Tr. N.E., 403-250-8894, tavernettayyc.ca

Teatro 200 8 Ave. S.E., 403-290-1012, teatro.ca

Charcut Roast House 101, 899 Centre St. S., 403-984-2180, charcut.com

Clive Burger 736 17 Ave. S.W., 403-229-9224, cliveburger.com

Cluck N Cleaver 1511 14 St. S.W., 403-266-2067; and 100, 917 85 St. S.W., 403-910-0052; cluckncleaver.com

Comery Block 638 17 Ave. S.W., 403-453-7636, comeryblock.com

Cotto Italian Comfort Food 314D 10 St. N.W., 587-356-4088, cottoyyc.com

The Coup 924 17 Ave. S.W., 403-541-1041, thecoup.ca

The Dandelion 1048 8 St. S.E., 403-475-3426, thedandelionyyc.ca

Double Zero CF Chinook Centre, 403-457-7677, doublezeropizza.ca

Earl’s Multiple locations, earls.ca

Fleur de Sel 2, 2015 4 St. S.W., 403-228-9764, fleurdeselbrasserie. com

Great Taste Restaurant

594 64 Ave. N.E., 403-275-6577; and 123 2 Ave. S.E., 403-265-9880; greattastecalgary.com

Hayden Block Smoke & Whiskey

1136 Kensington Rd. N.W., 403-283-3021, haydenblockyyc.com

Hy’s Steakhouse & Cocktail Bar

The Core Shopping Centre, 403-663-3363, hyssteakhouse.com

Joey Multiple locations, joeyrestaurants.com

Jurree’s Thai Place

2055 16 Ave. S.W., 403-264-6477, jurreesthaiplace.com

La Brezza Ristorante

990 1 Ave. N.E., 403-262-6230, labrezza.ca

The Lake House

747 Lake Bonavista Dr. S.E., 403-225-3939, lakehousecalgary.com

Lulu Bar

510 17 Ave. S.W., 403-519-0444 (text message only), lulubar.ca

Masala Bhavan

33A, 4604 37 St. S.W., 403-460-4535, masalabhavan.com

308 17 Ave. S.W., 403-265-7343, modelmilk.ca

Modern Steak 107 10A St. N.W., 403-670-6873; and 100 8 Ave. S.E., 403-244-3600; modernsteak.ca

Moose and Poncho 18, 132 3 Ave. S.E., 403-452-1846

Moti Mahal 1805 14 St. S.W., 403-228-9990, motimahal.ca

National (10th Avenue S.W. and 17th Avenue S.W. locations)

341 10 Ave. S.W., 403-474-2739; and 550 17 Ave. S.W., 403-229-0226; ntnl.ca

Native Tongues

Taqueria 235 12 Ave. S.W., 403-263-9444, nativetongues.ca

Palomino Smokehouse

109 7 Ave. S.W., 403-532-1911, thepalomino.ca

Pho Dau Bo 110, 4909 17 Ave. S.E., 403-272-5160, phodaubovietnamese.com

Pigeonhole 306 17 Ave. S.W., 403-452-4694, pigeonholeyyc.ca

Purlieu 3109 Palliser Dr. S.W., 403-280-7474, purlieucalgary.ca

Q Haute Cuisine 100 La Caille Pl. S.W., 403-262-5554, qhautecuisine.com

River Café 25 Prince’s Island Park, 403-261-7670, river-cafe.com

Rouge Restaurant 1240 8 Ave. S.E., 403-531-2767, rougecalgary.com

Shiki Menya 827 1 Ave. N.E., 403-454-2722, shikimenya.ca

Shokunin Izakaya 2016 4 St. S.W., 403-229-3444, shokuninyyc.ca

Silver Dragon Restaurant 106 3 Ave. S.E., 403-264-5326, silverdragoncalgary. com

Sky 360 Restaurant & Lounge 101 9 Ave. S.W., 403-532-7966, sky360.ca

Tamarind Vietnamese Grill and Noodle House 106, 1111 6 Ave. S.W., 403-262-6644

Ten Foot Henry 1209 1 St. S.W., 403-475-5537, tenfoothenry.com

Thai Sa-on 351 10 Ave. S.W., 403-264-3526, thai-sa-on.com

T.Pot China Bistro 100, 9650 Harvest Hills Blvd. N.E., 403-532-3982, tasteofasiagroup.ca

U & Me Restaurant 201, 233 Centre St. S.W., 403-264-5988, uandme-restaurant. com

Una Pizza + Wine 618 17 Ave. S.W., 403-453-1183, unapizzeria.com

Villa Firenze 610 1 Ave. N.E., 403-264-4297, villafirenze.ca

Vintage Chophouse 320 11 Ave. S.W., 403-262-7262, vintagechophouse. com

White Elephant Thai Cuisine 1808 19 St. N.E., 403-457-1172, whiteelephantcuisinecalgary.com

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• all the best
best new • best Overall
Gorgeous Resort wear for sunkissed days and warm evenings abroad.
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PHOTOGRAPHY BY Jared Bautista • STYLING BY Julie Roth • HAIR AND MAKEUP BY Sarah Francis MODEL Rielle M. (The People Model Management) • LOCATION AND ART BY Neshka
Avenue Calgary .com 73
Zimmerman jumpsuit, $925, from Holt Renfrew; sunglasses, $245, and sunglasses chain, $19, both from Bailey Nelson; Jimmy Choo shoes, $835, from Nordstrom; amber bracelets, $498 to $598; by Neshka. OPPOSITE Chanel vintage earrings, $378, and watermelon tourmaline ring, $1,598, both from The Upside; top, $46, from Zara.

Bound by Bond-Eye Australia swimsuit, $200, and Sun ’n’ Sand visor, $32, both from Swimco; The Row dress, $1,448, from The Upside; necklace, $33, from Bellissima; black-andwhite agate ring, $145, tiger ebony bracelet, $148, and ebony arches bracelet, $448, all by Neshka; Michael Michael Kors shoes, $168, from Michael Kors.

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Tanya Taylor dress, $292, Saint Laurent clutch, $1,800, and Balenciaga shoes, $404, all from Saks Fifth Avenue; hat, $65, from Nordstrom.
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Fabiana Filippi two-piece dress (with over-sweater), $1,498, and necklace, $585, both from La Chic.
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Sandro blouse, $340, and skirt, $340, both from Sandro Boutique at Hudson’s Bay CF Chinook Centre; Fendi shoes, $1,190, from Saks Fifth Avenue; Etereo earrings, $24, from Hudson’s Bay.
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Self-Portrait top, $370, Frame pants, $311, and Rebekah Price ring, $135, all from Nordstrom; Michael Michael Kors clutch, $128, from Michael Kors; Expression shoes, $79, from Hudson’s Bay.


Bailey Nelson, three Calgary locations, baileynelson.com

Bellissima, multiple Calgary locations, bellissimafashions.com

Holt Renfrew, The Core Shopping Centre, 403-269-7341, holtrenfrew.com

Hudson’s Bay, multiple Calgary locations, thebay.com

La Chic, Bankers Hall, 403-269-4775, lachiccalgary.com

Michael Kors, three Calgary locations, michaelkors.ca Neshka, neshka.com

Nordstrom, CF Chinook Centre, 587-291-2000, nordstrom.com

Saks Fifth Avenue, CF Chinook Centre, 403-440-2100, sakafifthavenue.com

Sandro Boutique at Hudson’s Bay CF Chinook Centre, 403-255-6121, thebay.com

The Upside, shoptheupside.com

Zara, CF Chinook Centre, 403-538-2357; and CF Market Mall, 403-202-0520, zara.com

Named one of Avenue magazine’s Best New Restaurants for 2020

Named one of Avenue magazine’s Best New Restaurants for 2020

Calgary’s modern and luxurious take on a classic steakhouse chairmans.ca

Calgary’s modern and luxurious take on a classic steakhouse chairmans.ca

Calgary’s modern and luxurious take on a classic steakhouse chairmans.ca

Named one of Avenue magazine’s Best New Restaurants for 2020

Named one of Avenue Magazine’s Best New Restaurants for 2020

Named one of Avenue Magazine’s Best New Restaurants for 2020



Named one of Avenue Magazine’s Best New Restaurants for 2020


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CONTENTS PAGE: Smythe blazer, $695, and pants, $425, and Nordstrom handbag, $119, all from Nordstrom; Alexander Wang shoes, $825, from Saks Fifth Avenue. Sandro jacket, $855, from Sandro Boutique at Hudson’s Bay CF Chinook Centre.



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The Commons is going through a growth spurt. Or more accurately, it’s going through another one.

Since it launched in 2013, one of Calgary’s original co-working spaces has gone from about 2,300 square feet of collective office space, sporadically occupied by what was then a small segment of the city’s workforce — freelancers, remote workers and solopreneurs — to a veritable indoor campus.

Exposed brick, velvet couches and chandelieradorned meeting rooms named in homage to the heritage of the Ramsay Design Centre building on 12th Street S.E. (which houses The Commons) extend in all directions. But the design choices go beyond aesthetics. Everything, from the desks and work tables that stud the open spaces, to the private offices, is geared toward flexibility, engineered to ebb and flow to accommodate the shifting nature of a workforce that increasingly expands or contracts with the scope of various projects.

Co-owned by siblings Erynn and Zach Lyster, The Commons has roots in the city’s first coworking space, Cowork YYC. Erynn joined Cowork YYC in 2010, and in 2013 she purchased the business, bringing her brother Zach on and relaunching with the new name. Over the course of a tour last fall, director of sales and community engagement Jessica Steinbach describes the chronology of The Commons’ growing footprint. The Hemingway Room, a dedicated event space in the former home of Fast Forward Weekly, was added in 2015. The “atrium,” named for its airy feel and large windows, came into the fold last June and now houses the offices of a number of local businesses, including Crave Cupcakes.

On the second floor (also added last June) we breeze past yet more offices and a podcast studio en route to The Commons’ latest acquisition, the former offices of Calgary Scientific. Steinbach tells

me this will become part of The Commons’ growing empire in 2020. When that happens, the co-working space will occupy over 25,000 square feet serving 230 members, all coming and going as they please. “Sometimes I feel like the mayor of a small town,” Steinbach quips, as she leads me through the warren-like space, greeting each member she sees by name.

The fact that The Commons has managed to expand at such a rate when commercial real estate — and many businesses — in Calgary have struggled under the weight of the city’s economic downturn may be impressive, but it isn’t unique. Co-working spaces, whether run by multinational conglomerates or local upstarts, are expanding across the city at what feels like an exponential rate.

According to CBRE Canada’s first-ever Canadian Flexible Real Estate Report, released last October, co-working spaces have grown by 100 per cent in Calgary since 2017, with 51 locations occupying a combined 918,000 sq. ft. of office space, more than half of which is downtown. Although that only accounts for 1.3 per cent of Calgary’s office inventory, the volume of co-work space is projected to grow significantly in the coming years. According to a recent report from global real estate firm JLL, “flexible workspaces” (of which co-working is the most common form) are expected to comprise as much as 30 per cent of all office space in the U.S. by 2030. Experts in the industry say Canada will likely follow suit.


But while co-working in bigger markets, such as Toronto and Vancouver, has been driven primarily by a scarcity of affordable office space and relatively healthy economies, Calgary’s recent uptick seems to be the result of just the opposite — at least at first glance.

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The slowdown in the local economy has left a glut of open office space, while the corresponding rise in contract, freelance and project-based jobs has reduced the need for long-term leases, as has the global increase in remote work. But there has also been a general shift in what people want from work, or more specifically, their workspaces. Fewer people are willing to endure long commutes just to toil in cubicle farms bathed in fluorescent light, if they can help it. Access to natural light and plants in flexible, beautiful spaces has become the new baseline for modern workplaces, preferably in close proximity to amenities such as gyms, restaurants, bars and community attractions that foster wellness and social connection.

“Millennials, and others, want a more collaborative, open-space environment for exchanges of ideas,” says Leslie Shier, director of client

excellence for Calgary Economic Development (CED). Over the past few years, Shier says commercial landlords in the city have retooled to attract these kinds of workers by leasing to coworking providers who will build these trendy

environments. “Co-working is playing a really significant part in every single landlord’s portfolio,” Shier says. “We’ve seen Oxford put in co-working within Bow Valley Square, we’ve seen Aspen put in co-working space in each of their buildings, we’ve seen Slate come in and purchase Stephen Avenue Place and they’ve attracted WeWork into their building.”

But the rise of co-working in Calgary goes beyond serving the aesthetic and social desires of a specific generation of workers, or even capitalizing on a depressed real-estate market, Shier notes. It’s proving to be a critical player in rejuvenating the city’s sputtering economy.

Once thought of as the exclusive domain of freelancers, solopreneurs and victims of various recessions who had been reduced to contract workers, co-working has evolved into a critical tool for economic diversification — not just in Calgary but in many cities around the world. Without the responsibility associated with long-term commercial leases, companies large and small have come to rely on co-working as a low-risk way to experiment with new sectors, products and markets, Shier says. In this city, sectors such as life sciences, agribusiness, renewable energy, gaming and virtual reality are all growing, due in part to the relatively low overhead and collaborative environment co-working allows. “It’s the companies that are coming in with three individuals who say: ‘this is our idea, this is our product, we’d like to test our market here, we’d like to scale to 20 employees, to 50 employees, to 100 employees over a certain period of time,’” she says. “And that’s a relatively short period of time.”

Importantly, it’s not just homegrown upstarts that are testing Calgary’s waters this way. The proliferation of co-working in Calgary has brought an influx of companies and professionals from other parts of the country — even the continent — who are using these spaces as a platform to audition the city as a permanent base.

B.C.-based Finger Food Advanced Technology Group is one of them. CEO and co-founder Ryan Peterson says the company, which creates cloudbased apps to help companies transition their workflow to a digital economy, chose Calgary as the home for its global development centre in 2019 after sending emissary teams to investigate the viability of expansion both here and in Toronto. In both cities the company’s base was Workhaus, a Toronto-based co-working chain, which opened a location in Calgary’s downtown

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core in April, 2019. “Our strategy as a business when we’re looking at new territories is to use a co-working space and then flip over to office space once we understand the city,” Peterson says. Having Workhaus as a landing pad in both locations allowed Finger Food to assess and compare critical factors for expansion, such as real-estate cost, available talent base and proximity to its target industries. “We ended up picking Calgary based on really good support from the city as well as the local business community,” Peterson says, noting the company has since moved out of Workhaus and into a permanent home in the Brookfield building on 7th Avenue S.W. When we spoke, Finger Food’s Calgary outpost had about 40 employees with plans to grow to around 150. “That co-working space allowed us to figure out our plans, and at the end of the day make a far bigger commitment.”

A head count of 150 (or even smaller) may be a far cry from the head offices of thousands that characterized Calgary’s recent business past, but that reduced size of organization is likely to be the city’s future, says Todd Hirsch, chief economist for ATB financial. “The idea of a giant office tower with the big corporate head office, we still see that, but it is really kind of a 20th century idea,” Hirsch says.

Companies are downsizing all over the world, not just in Calgary, and that’s reshaping the concept of downtowns as business centres. The inclusion of condos in the new Telus Sky building, as well as the influx of shared workspaces, is indicative of a future where downtown Calgary becomes more mixed-use with a growing emphasis on residential and retail. Work and workspaces will continue to be part of the mix, Hirsch says, but the general trend is that Calgary’s business centre is likely to become decentralized. “I just don’t know if we’ll see a lot of corporate workers downtown the same way we would have maybe 20 years ago,” he says.

What we are likely to see more of, however, is co-working spaces. Despite its internal turmoil and the departure of notorious CEO Adam Neumann last September, international co-work behemoth WeWork opened its first Calgary location in December on Stephen Avenue, followed by a second location in January in The Edison building on 9th Avenue S.W. In a statement emailed to me, WeWork’s general manager for Canada, Stephen Tapp, wrote that the company was drawn to the city due to its high standard of living and educated talent base. “This is a very

livable, highly educated, incredibly beautiful place where people want to live, work and grow,” he wrote.

WeWork is not the only out-of-town brand to set its sights on Calgary’s “flexible” workforce. The national chain iQ Offices, along with Workhaus, which counts 10 locations in Toronto and one in Kitchener-Waterloo, both entered the Calgary market in the past year. At the same time, more traditional shared office providers like Stratus Offices and Regus — a multinational company — which have long had a presence here, have started to adapt their brands to the more “hip” contemporary co-working ethos, which places an emphasis on community rather than just shared workplace infrastructure.

Not everyone, however, believes the influx of large co-working companies to be the end-all for downtown Calgary’s commercial real estate woes. WeWork and the like might alleviate some of the pain for landlords by signing long-term commercial leases with larger footprints, but the co-working companies still have to fill those spaces with people, says Lori King, vice president of Core Commercial Real Estate. And that’s no small task in a changing economy. “They’re out hustling for tenants like every other landlord,” says King, who represents commercial tenants.

Companies that do sign leases with WeWork or other co-working spaces will often pay more than they would for a traditional lease with a commercial landlord, King adds. Some companies find the shorter terms and flexibility afforded by co-working, along with the cultural cachet in attracting a younger workforce, to be worth the premium, she says, but others may balk at the price. And although King says she has seen signs of a return among larger corporate tenants to downtown Calgary, it’s too early to tell whether the influx of co-working companies will meaningfully contribute to the area’s economic rejuvenation. “Whether you’re a traditional office landlord or a co-working space operator, it’s challenging to fill those empty desks,” she says.

And then there’s the question of what impact these well-heeled co-working providers will have on local independent operators. Are homegrown co-working spaces at risk of getting pushed out by competitors with deeper pockets and global name recognition? Overwhelmingly, at this time, the sentiment is no, the more the merrier.

According to Alex Putici, founder of Calgarybased Work Nicer, which has three co-working “outposts” in this city and one in Edmonton,


Basic membership rates at five co-working spaces in Calgary.


Gallery membership: $275 per month.

What you get: Access to more than 25,000 square feet of workspace as well as additional workspace at No Island (a sister co-work space opened by The Commons' founders); 10 bookable boardroom hours; coffee and tea; a toast bar; Wi-Fi; printing and community programming (professional- and personal-development events and social gatherings). 1206 20 Ave. S.E., 403-452-7938, thecommonscalgary.com


Gallery membership: $275 per month.

What you get: Ten bookable boardroom hours per month, complimentary artisan coffee and tea, toast bar, Wi-Fi, printing, 24-7 access to the space and community programming events. Members also get full access to The Commons. 1232 9 Ave. S.E., 403-444-9000, noisland.ca


Hot Desk membership: $350 per month

What you get: Access to two downtown Calgary WeWork locations as well as all 600 (and counting) global WeWork locations, frontdesk and guest-reception services, conference rooms, Wi-Fi, kitchenettes, micro-brewed coffee and on-site support from a community manager. 700 2 St. S.W., 403-879-9080; and 150 9 Ave. S.W., 403-879-9046; wework.com


Hot Desk membership: $295 per month.

What you get: 24-7 access to the Hot Desk Lounge area, on-site gym, front-desk reception (during business hours), Wi-Fi, monthly meetingroom credits, use of the lounge in all Workhaus locations across the country, bike parking, social and networking events, start-up mentors, unlimited coffee and tea and unlimited black-andwhite printing.

606 4 St. S.W., 403-488-4497, workhaus.ca


General membership: $400 per month.

What you get: 24-7 access to all Work Nicer locations, event space, private lockers, local craft beer on tap, Wi-Fi, private phone booths, office supplies, business-class printing and culture-building events. —Samantha Gryba Three Calgary locations, 587-316-2782, worknicer.com

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the entrance of corporate giants like WeWork to the market may be the best thing that’s ever happened to co-working in Calgary. “Our biggest issue right now, especially in Calgary, is that people still don’t know what co-working is,” he says. “And some people that do don’t necessarily take it seriously.”

Some landlords have been wary of leasing to co-working spaces due to a lack of familiarity with the model — or a lingering association of co-working as a consolation prize for companies or entrepreneurs who can’t afford a “real” office, Putici says. But the presence of WeWork and other large operators in the city has brought more credibility to the industry. It has even helped drive interest in locally owned spaces. “When [WeWork] announced that they were opening in Calgary, within the two weeks after, 60 per cent of the traffic to our website came from people Googling WeWork,” Putici says, noting local operators in other cities have seen a similar “WeWork effect.”

“We offer a good product, we offer a good service, we honour our customers and the more that people can learn about us — however that happens — the better,” Putici says.

His confidence is echoed among operators across the city, who seem to believe that coworking as an industry, at least at this stage, is virtually competition-proof. That’s because what attracts clients to one space over another isn’t as much about concrete factors like location, price or amenities, it’s the sense of culture that emerges from the specific mix of people using the space. And that is impossible to replicate.

According to Putici, people tend to “self-sort” among the city’s co-working spaces according to the kind of vibe they’re seeking, with operators often referring clients among one another. Some may find Work Nicer’s relaxed open-concept atmosphere to be the perfect fit, while others are looking for a more traditional-style workspace with a downtown feel.

The Commons’ Steinbach likens it to choosing where you get your coffee. “You’re going to have people that like Starbucks, others want to go to Rosso,” she says. Some people might even go back and forth between a few before settling on a favourite. In the end, finding a fit is about finding a place where you feel you can connect with likeminded people. To that end, the Lysters opened a second co-working space in 2019, in conjunction with developer Rndsqr, on 9th Avenue S.E. in Inglewood. Called No Island, the space has a separate membership and vibe from The Commons.

Despite their distinct personalities, the unifying thread in co-working spaces, and what sets them apart from mere shared office space, is the commitment to rebuilding the community aspect that has been increasingly bred out of our experience of work in recent years, to the detriment of our health, well-being and even economic prosperity.

“Twenty or 30 years ago, when people first started to telecommute and computers made it possible to work from home, a lot of people were keen to do that,” says ATB’s Hirsch. “But then they realized actually sitting at home all day, five days a week, is really difficult for a lot of people to do. They need the social interaction. They need the energy of other people around them.”

That’s especially true in a city like Calgary, where so many people are starting over after being laid off from the oil and gas industry, or exploring their options for a career transition to a new field. For those venturing out, or those suddenly left on their own, co-working spaces provide somewhere to go during the day, and in some cases, provide access to benefits like group health care and discounted cellphone plans. But the biggest benefit that industry proponents see is co-working’s role in providing an optimistic counter-narrative to the stories of doom and


gloom that have prevailed in the city as the oil and gas industry has dwindled.

There’s a psychological boost that occurs from being part of an environment where people can casually cross-pollinate ideas, explore new opportunities and feed off of each other’s energy, experience and creative impulses. Rather than dwelling on what the city once was, the growth of co-working, and the workers it attracts, is about focusing instead on what the city could become.

“When you get into that kind of an environment, it’s hard to think negatively with regard to Calgary, because it really is vibrant,” says CED’s Shier.

“It’s exciting.”

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Avenue Calgary .com 85 Find the career that fits you. Evening and weekend programs starting in May 2020. Learn more at sait.ca/TheTimeIsNow

A Museum Maven in the Mountains

Last summer, Donna Livingstone left her role as president and CEO of Glenbow to become CEO of Banff’s Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies and the Peter and Catharine Whyte Foundation. Instead of working in Calgary’s core, she now spends her days in the heart of Banff, and you might say she has fully embraced the transition. “In Calgary we talk about the traffic on Crowchild, and here we talk about the herd of elk in the bushes outside my window,” she laughs. “Nature is always around you here.”

Livingstone says moving to Banff was a welcome opportunity to think about what matters most to her, and to pare down her belongings accordingly. Curating objects, getting organized, finding a focus — these are skills Livingstone has been cultivating for years in her professional life. The Whyte Museum is the latest in a number of cultural institutions that Livingstone has helmed; she was executive director of the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre in Vancouver in the early aughts, and from 2008 to 2013 she was the director of the University of Calgary Press. She spent more than six years leading Glenbow, not including the decade she spent there between 1988 and 1998 working in public relations and later as vice president of programs and exhibitions.

As she reflects on her time at Glenbow, Livingstone says she’s proud to have defined a focus for the multi-faceted organization: to be Calgary’s public art museum. “It got us excited, being able to bring the cultural history collection into the art story,” she says. She is particularly proud of a number of projects that succeeded in showcasing Glenbow’s collection through art, from fashion designer Paul Hardy’s Kaleidoscopic Animalia exhibition, made from pieces the designer curated from the collection, to the work of 2018 artist-in-residence Albertine Crow Shoe, a Piikani artist and

jeweller who used objects from the collection as inspiration. Crow Shoe says having access to Glenbow’s collection of Blackfoot art (including pieces by her own great-grandfather, Bull Plume) was an extraordinary opportunity. When Glenbow first approached Crow Shoe about the residency, she had recently lost her husband and was considering putting art on the back burner in favour of a more conventional job. Now, her path is clear. “[The residency] was life changing for me,” Crow Shoe says. “Donna was very supportive.”

The move to Banff didn’t happen all at once. Originally, Livingstone split her time between the mountains and her Calgary home, tying up loose ends alongside her husband Edward Cavell. Commuting between Calgary and Banff was nothing new for the couple — Cavell is a former photography curator for the Whyte Museum and their now-shuttered toy store also had locations in both places at one point.

If the names Livingstone and Cavell ring a bell, it’s probably because of that toy store. The couple opened Livingstone & Cavell Extraordinary Toys in 1992, a beloved Kensington shop that closed its doors at the end of 2019. Livingstone says it was wonderful to see people who had shopped there as children return with their own children. The traditional-style shop also offered another opportunity for her to support the arts: she and Cavell chose to hire recent art school graduates, young artists at the stage of their lives where practical concerns began to put their artistic ambitions at risk. The couple provided stable employment while strongly encouraging their employees to keep building their artistic careers. “We got crazy window displays out of it, too,” Livingstone laughs.

Livingstone grew up on a small island off Vancouver Island, and she says someone once told her Banff was like an island, too. She thinks they were right. “It’s surrounded by incredible environment and it’s filled with incredible storytellers,” she

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Since leaving her post at Glenbow and closing the doors last year on the Calgary toy store she co-founded, Donna Livingstone is now living her best mountain life as head of the Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies in Banff.

says. As such, it’s a fitting locale for a lifelong story lover like Livingstone, who has a goal of reading 2,000 books in her lifetime. It’s mountain tales that inspire her when she thinks about what she wants to accomplish at the Whyte. She considers it her mission to share the region’s stories with museum visitors, from the town’s core residents to the more than four million visitors who flood Banff National Park each year.

Her favourite story — the one that made her new role irresistible — is the story of the Whyte Museum itself, which

has stood on its riverside site since 1968. The museum and archive, which Livingstone considers an “engine of meaning for mountain culture,” was a passion project for artist couple Peter and Catharine Whyte; their former home/studio still stands on the property. Livingstone sees the Whytes as pillars of the community who helped to shape what Banff has become. She’s delighted to be carrying on their legacy.

“The Whyte Museum starts with a love story,” she says.

“How wonderful is that?”

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Donna Livingstone, the newly installed CEO of the Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies, in the former home of the museum’s namesakes, Peter and Catharine Whyte.

The Scaredy Cat’s Guide to the Mountains

You know that guy who can summit a peak, build a shelter, fight a bear and catch lunch in a stream? Yeah. You’re not that guy. Not even close. In fact, the very idea of venturing out into the mountain areas makes you feel uneasy when you start thinking about all the things that could go awry. But guess what? The mountains aren’t only for the rugged. They’re for everyone — even those who are a bit softer around the edges. So what if you’re more scaredy cat than bobcat, here’s how you can get out there and still enjoy the Rockies in a way that makes you feel at home.

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Photograph by Shannon Martin

How to Get Up Close to a Glacier Without the Worry that You’ll Fall into a Crevasse

Even those who haven’t read any Jon Krakauer know instinctively that glaciers are not to be taken lightly. The very word sends a cold shiver down the backs of seasoned mountaineers and street-level civilians alike. Terrible and beautiful, enthroned among craggy peaks and riddled with deep and deadly crevasses, glaciers are our merciless alpine overlords.

Although intrepid alpine adventurers might live for the thrill of exploring such a fearsome natural phenomenon, for the rest of the normies out there who have no desire to flirt with danger, the optimum way to get up close to a glacier is the Columbia Icefield Adventure tour.

The Columbia Icefield is situated along the Icefields Parkway, the highway that joins Banff and Jasper National Parks, just past the halfway point on the Jasper side. Comprised of multiple glaciers, the Icefield has long been an attraction for Park tourists, who arrive by the busload during the summer months to be ferried up onto the Athabasca Glacier (a welcome mat of sorts for the Icefield) via Ice Explorer buses fitted with gargantuan snow tires.

Now part of the portfolio of the international experiential travel company Pursuit, the Icefield Adventure, which operates mid-April to midOctober, continues to draw busloads, even as the Athabasca has experienced significant recession. Return guests who last visited several decades ago are uniformly shocked by the expanse of moraine — gravelly banks formed by glacial movement — that now separates the ice sheet and the Parkway. While you can certainly join the hordes on one of the standard tours during the daytime, a far better way to get up on the Athabasca is to book the Glacier View Experience, a private evening tour packaged with an overnight stay at the Glacier View Lodge. Since being bought by Pursuit, the formerly unremarkable hotel has undergone an all-out renovation into a minimalist alpine-modern stunner with decor elements inspired by glacial motifs. Along with the accommodation and private tour, Glacier View Experience guests get a three-course dinner at the in-house Altitude restaurant and buffet breakfast the next morning, followed by a visit to the nearby Columbia Icefield Skywalk, an architecturally impressive glass-floored viewing deck along the Parkway jutting out over the Sunwapta Valley 900 feet below.

The Glacier View Experience kicks off with a charcuterie and sparkling-wine welcome reception in the Moraine Lounge, where a huge wall of windows provides exceptional views of the main attraction. The tour embarks as the sky begins to show hints of sunset, bathing the surrounding peaks with the palest pink glow as you meander the ice sheet and sip hot chocolate or cider.

True, getting bused to a glacier visible from a highway after being served charcuterie is not exactly hard-core mountaineering. But there’s still a visceral thrill to getting so close to an ancient and ever-changing force of nature. As an Albertan, standing on this moving, living, breathing sheet of ice moves something inside you. To a glacier, you may be about a significant as a piece of moraine, and yet, you feel drawn to protect it. —S.A.

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Skywalk photograph by Mike Seehagel; hotel photograph courtesy of Pursuit Collection LEFT The Columbia Icefield Adventure offers guests the experience of walking on glacial ice. TOP The Columbia Icefield Skywalk is an architectural marvel jutting out over the Sunwapta Valley. ABOVE The Moraine Lounge at the Glacier View Lodge on the Icefields Parkway.

Four Hiking Trails in the Mountains Where You Couldn’t Get Lost Even if You Tried

You don’t have to be an expert in orienteering to enjoy these easy hikes, all with obvious places for parking, clearly marked routes and well-trodden paths. No doubt, they’re beautiful, which is why they’re popular — rather than “hidden gems,” consider these hikes mined and polished and on display in the case of a major jewellery retailer. The price of popularity is that these trails are bound to be crowded on weekends, so for optimum enjoyment try to go mid-week.


The parking lot for this 4.3-km out-and-back trail in Banff is on St. Julien Road, the road that connects downtown Banff to the Banff Centre for Arts & Creativity campus. The trail is somewhat steep, but it has lots of switchbacks (another one where you’ll be happy to have micro-spikes with you in the event that you need them). At the top, you’ll be rewarded with incredible views of town, Mount Rundle and the Bow River hoodoos. Afterwards, escape the Banff Avenue crowds at the Juniper Bistro, located just up from town on the road that leads to Mt. Norquay ski resort. Their special “graze” menu is available from 2:30 p.m. on weekends and 4 p.m. on weekdays.


Pull into the West Bragg Creek day use area north parking lot and you’ll be greeted by a large map describing the area’s trail system. On the five-km Snowshoe Hare loop, dogs can roam off-leash once you’re officially outside the boundary of Bragg Creek Provincial Park (just minutes from the trailhead). The path is forested with a few small hills — an easy trek in either direction. The loop’s west side allows horseback riders and cyclists, so be sure to share the trail. Grab coffee afterwards at Moto Café in Bragg Creek.


Off Highway 40 (Kananaskis Trail), turn up Mount Allen Drive then onto Stoney Trail for parking lot access. This 3.4-km out-and-back hike is a family favourite. The tree-lined trail is mostly flat and features a stunning waterfall at the end that freezes in the winter (if you’re feeling adventurous, there’s also a well-marked off-shoot trail that allows you to ascend higher than the main falls). After your hike, head to Blacktail Bar in the Pomeroy Kananaskis Mountain Lodge, which also offers a kids’ menu. —A.B.

FEAR DISORIENTATION HOW TO DEAL Do a guided hike. Kananaskis Outfitters kananaskisoutfitters.com Canadian Rockies Alpine Hiking canadianrockiesalpine.com Great Divide Nature Interpretation greatdivide.ca
Snowshoe Hare and Troll Falls photography by Sarah Nealon; Grotto Creek photograph by Jonathan Zoeteman


Park at the Grotto Mountain day-use lot between Exshaw and Canmore for this 4.2-km out-and-back hike. If it’s still feeling a bit like winter, you’ll want to have micro-spikes (metal grips that slip on over your shoes or boots) for the walk along the frozen canyon floor. Watch for pictographs on the left as you hike in.


When you’re out being active in the mountains, sometimes all it takes to turn a bad time into a good time is the right snack. Here are a bunch that are easy to stash away in your pack or pocket, and most importantly, taste great.

Clif Bars The O.G. of energy bars has been at it since 1992. Clif’s oldschool flavours like chocolate chip and crunchy peanut butter are still around, but the company has also kept current with a line of fruit-smoothie-filled bars in flavours such as wild-blueberry acai and tart cherry berry. —S.A. clifbar.ca

Empire Provisions

Beef Jerky We southern Albertans loooove our jerky, and the local charcuterie wizards at Empire Provisions make some of the best beef jerky in town. Stash some strips of maple-mustard in your pocket for a one-way ticket to flavour country. empireprovisions.com

Little Tucker These plant-based snacks were developed here in Cal gary by Aussie expat Laura Incog nito, who grew the company from a grassroots operation into a national brand. Try her snickaroo squares, made with nut butter, maple syrup, sea salt and raw chocolate. littletucker.ca

Moon Cheese Cheese isn’t always the best trail snack, but Moon Cheese is a revelation. It’s basically legit cheese with the moisture removed, a process that leaves it looking like moon rocks. Crunchy, savoury, packed with protein, it’s as addictive as popcorn. Dogs dig it, too. mooncheese.com

Shameless Energy Balls

These get the vote for cheeki est packaging (blurred-out sections suggest the featured ingredients have something to hide). Tuck a package of “sassy lemon coconut” in your pocket for a gluten-free, vegan, ketoappropriate snack that will also make you chuckle. nakedcoconuts.com

ViaBars ViaBars are glutenfree, 100-per cent vegan and loaded with super-healthy raw seeds. And, they’re made just down the road in High River. Grab a 16-bar variety pack to figure out whether you’re more of a coconut crave type or a mucho mocha type. viafoods.com

Avenue Calgary .com 91 FEAR RUNNING LOW ON ENERGY

The No-Stress All-Inclusive Wellness Experience in Kananaskis Country that will Leave You Feeling

Relaxed and Refreshed

From your perch looking out at the Kananaskis Country Rockies your “adventure guide” implores you to envision the word that embodies your current state of mind. As you straighten your spine and take a deep breath of the crisp mountain air, you can’t help but feel grounded, serene in your spectacular surroundings.

Many people dream of achieving such an idyllic experience, but don’t know how or where to start. The appeal of the all-inclusive wellness retreat is that it takes the guesswork out of planning, handling the logistics of all of the dining, lodging and activities for a truly restorative mountain getaway. Co-founded by Calgary physician Dr. Ingemaud Gerber, Evolve Retreat Co. offers comprehensive wellness experiences ranging from one-day mini-retreats to weeklong immersives.

The retreats incorporate fitness training, adventure activities, clean-eating, restorative yoga nidra sessions (sometimes accompanied by live

cello) and personal wellness seminars on how to get better sleep, manage your stress and more. Evolve has hopped around various venues in the Rockies and the Foothills, but it recently found a home at Crosswaters Resort, the renovated lodge tucked behind the Pomeroy Kananaskis Mountain Lodge in Kananaskis Village.

Before even setting foot in K-Country, guests go through a pre-retreat consultation to create a customized itinerary. Eliminating the stress of having to work out the details allows you to redirect the focus on yourself — and your wellness. “It’s really about providing a plan and being that support system for the people that come to our retreats,” says Tina Green, Evolve’s co-founder and director of experience.

Evolve is billed as a wellness retreat, but adventure is a key part of the programming. A typical day includes the option to pursue activities such as hiking (both at a relaxed pace or an advanced level), horseback riding and kayaking or canoeing.

You’ll also have the opportunity to engage oneon-one with specific members of the Evolve team, whose areas of expertise range from strength and mindset training to meditation.

You can spend your individual time with a nature walk along the Village Rim Trail, journaling about your experiences or reading that book that’s been on your nightstand for months. But undoubtedly, the best perk of the Kananaskis Village location is the proximity to the Kananaskis Nordic Spa, conveniently located beside Crosswaters Resort. After grueling workouts with renowned trainer Tommy Europe or an all-day hike up into the alpine, the spa’s hot-cold-rest cycle is the ideal way to recuperate.

The ironic thing about trying to individually plan a wellness-focused getaway is that it can end up being overwhelmingly stressful — especially in the mountains. Between the fear of getting lost on a trail, being ambushed by sudden weather changes and trying to figure out where to stay and how to plan adequate meals, it’s not surprising if, in the end, you’d rather stay in the city. But, with every detail of your visit, from the curated menu and personalized workout plan, to the yoga nidra and workshops, signing on for an Evolve Retreat means you can definitely sleep easier. —M.W.

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Photography by Mariah Wilson
Avenue Calgary .com 93 Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra 27 + 28 March 2020 / 7:30PM Jack Singer Concert Hall calgaryphil.com | 403.571.0849 Hits of the '70s: A Classic Rock Songbook A symphonic tribute to the biggest bands of the vinyl years — Fleetwood Mac, The Doobie Brothers, Led Zeppelin, and more! lavish_canvas_business_cards_forprint.pdf 1 2020-01-08 10:39 AM lavish_canvas_business_cards_forprint.pdf 1 2020-01-08 10:39 AM lavishcanvas.com 403.862.1940 GLAMPING TENTS AND UNIQUE EVENT MATERIALS Enjoy the great outdoors in your comfort zone We set up exquisite tents with sumptuous furnishings and decor for your ultimate glamping experience.


Read some books about wilderness survival. In addition to preparing you to deal with those not likely to happen (but just what if it did?) situations, wilderness survival books look badass on your coffee table.

What to do When There’s a Bear Warning Sign at the Start of Your Hiking Trail

So, your day pack is stocked with energy bars, your cellphone and an extra layer of clothing, your water bottle is full and you’ve parked and secured your vehicle in the lot or whatever roadside parking there is (and yes, you’ve got your keys). Your hiking shoes are tied up the way you like them and you’re 100-per cent ready to hit the trail.

But there’s a sign: “Bear in Area.”

How ominous. What now?

Unlike an official Alberta Parks or Parks Canada trail closure, which legally restricts anyone from entering an area due to bear activity, a warning still allows hikers to proceed. A closure is a bummer, but at least it’s clear. With a warning, just because you technically can still do the hike, the bigger question is: should you?

A closure is often a proactive measure to keep people away from areas ripe with intensive production of bears’ favourite food, or a response to reports of a bear acting aggressively toward people while protecting cubs or a carcass. A warning, on the other hand, means there have been multiple sightings of a bear near the trail as recent as 24 hours ago. “[With] a warning, we don’t have knowledge of an imminent danger, but we have an elevated level of concern,” says John Paczkowski, an ecologist with Alberta Parks. “We warn people there has been above-average bear activity in a spot, and they should proceed with more caution than they would typically.”

If you do decide to proceed, it’s important to know how to be safe. Number one, is not to be alone — groups of four or more are far less likely to have a serious bear encounter, Paczkowski says. If you’re flying solo and really don’t want to turn back, ask another hiking group if you can

tag along. Additionally, if you have your dog with you, it might be best not to venture forth. Even on leash, dogs can exacerbate the aggression level of bears, or escalate intensity, Paczkowski says.

When you’re out on the trail, making lots of noise is key to helping avoid a surprise bear attack. Also key is every member of the group carrying bear spray — and knowing how to use it. Both Parks Canada and Alberta Parks have instructions on their respective websites on how to properly use bear spray, or if you’re buying bear spray at an outfitter such as MEC or Bass Pro Shops you can always ask the staff.

Bush Craft 101: A Field Guide to the Art of Wilderness Survival by Dave Canterbury (Simon and Schuster), a classic of the genre.


Bear spray is a mix of substances including capsicum, an oily resin derived from hot peppers, in a pressurized canister. When sprayed at an approaching bear, the capsicum causes temporary eye irritation and breathing difficulty, which is no doubt awful for the bear, but ultimately not fatal. A canister will spray for a duration of about eight to 10 seconds. Bear spray is similar in makeup to pepper spray, though pepper spray is classified as a prohibited weapon as defined by the Firearms Act, while “bear deterrent spray” is legal to possess and carry (so long as it’s not being used on humans). The canisters expire, so it’s important to check the dates from season to season. —S.A.

While you’re hiking, keep an eye out for signs of bears. If you see lots of digging marks or scat (bear poop) consider turning around. It’s not fun admitting defeat, but it’s better to be safe than stubborn. If you find you’re frequently venturing into areas that have bear activity warnings, consider taking a bear awareness course from an organization such as Calgary-based Bear Safety & More, which offers customized workshops and bear assessments for the oil and gas, forestry, construction, transportation and tourism sectors. The Outdoor Centre at the University of Calgary presents regular bear-safety lectures (the Outdoor Centre website also links to an instructional video on how to use bear spray).

Official warning or not, the regional mountain areas require bear awareness at all times. “Anytime you set foot out of your vehicle, or travel in the natural environment of Kananaskis, you are, in fact, in bear country,” Paczkowski says, “so you need to be alert and prepared, and you need to anticipate having a bear encounter. With that in mind, you want to avoid that eventuality.” —T.B

Outdoor Safety Handbook by Buck Tilton (Stackpole Books), because Buck Tilton seems like the name of someone who knows how to get things done.

Outdoor Safety & Survival by Mike

(Rocky Mountain Books), because the author is from Prince George so he’d be especially knowledgeable about survival in the mountains of Western Canada.

Avenue’s writers and editors are occasionally invited to experience dining or adventure activities as a guest, including some experiences in this section. Neither complementary experiences nor advertising are required for coverage in Avenue. Neither companies that advertise nor those that provide other incentives are promised editorial coverage, nor do they have the opportunity to review or approve stories before publication.

94 avenueMARCH.20

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7265-11 Street SE

Calgary, AB T2H 2S1

CDL North 11752 Sarcee Trail NW

Calgary, AB T3R 0A1

CDL Invermere 4B 492 Arrow Road

Invermere, BC V0A 1K2



Located on a quiet tree-lined street in historic Scarboro & situated on a sweeping 857 sq m corner lot, this splendid, gracious character home has been beautifully renovated & designed by Paul Lavoie, creating warmth while maintaining the original charm of the home. The main level presents hardwood floors, wainscoting & some leaded glass windows which showcase the spacious foyer, formal living & dining rooms. The family room with access to the back deck is open to the well-appointed kitchen finished with quartz counter tops, breakfast bar, island, tons of storage space & top of the line stainless steel appliance package.


Enjoy serene country living in beautiful Elbow Valley! Situated on a large, private lot, this beautifully updated home offers a total of 3 bedrooms & over 3,700 sq ft of living space. The main floor presents hardwood floors, 10’ ceilings & is illuminated with pot lighting & stylish light fixtures, giving the home a light, airy feel. The open concept is ideal for entertaining featuring a living room with floor to ceiling stone fireplace (with full Nova Sit conversion) which is open to the well-appointed kitchen finished with granite counter tops, plenty of storage space, island/eating bar, casual dining area & stainless steel appliance package.

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their visitors to gather around.

A Modern Haven

How a family of three found their happy place by mixing contemporary minimalism and mid-century-modern warmth.

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The kitchen island is an inviting spot for the family and

Tracey Contrada and her husband Clint Phillips were experiencing an evolution in their family life. And with Contrada’s daughter Ava entering her teens, the couple realized they wanted to find a new home that better suited their evolving needs.

After looking at some houses on the market, Contrada and Phillips realized what they wanted was a new build in an established community, with a backyard, proximity to their downtown offices and space to host friends and family. Their builder found a lot in Mount Pleasant, offering the chance to design their home from the ground up. It was the perfect fit. In fact, the results are so fabulous the home has received international attention, and was recently featured in Home & Design Trends, a Times of India publication.

The couple wanted a spacious, open-concept home that incorporated mid-century-modern pieces with a more contemporary design style. They hired Aly Velji and Katie Nelson from Alykhan Velji Designs to integrate Phillips’ request for a fairly neutral, clean and clutter-free space with Contrada’s love of colour and desire for a home that felt warm and inviting.

To provide visual interest, Velji and Nelson focused on textural elements and mixed furniture styles. In the living room, which features a striking marble fireplace, they placed a pair of midcentury-modern chairs recovered with a handpicked soft, paleblue velvet opposite a neutral, Scandinavian-modern couch. They added accessories in black and brass and a colourful rug to bring warmth and personality into the space.

Velji and Nelson ensured design elements in each room transitioned seamlessly into the others. In the kitchen, the marble herringbone backsplash carries over materials from the livingroom fireplace, while the ceridian-blue colour of the kitchen island’s base can be seen throughout the home.

When Nelson first showed the homeowners this blue, Contrada admits they were hesitant, and tried several different samples before eventually agreeing to it. “[The designers] pushed us out of our comfort zone,” she says, ultimately understanding that it was a design risk worth taking.

“If you went safe on everything, then your custom home wouldn’t look custom,” Contrada says.

Avenue Calgary .com 97
The rug in the living room was the cornerstone of Alykan Velji Designs’ colour story for this new build in Mount Pleasant.


The kitchen features ample cabinetry and storage space below the countertops, which allows functional items to be tucked away, maintaining the clean, minimalist look. Open shelving displays an artful selection of books and other items while the uncluttered kitchen island provides a welcoming space for friends and family to gather.

Velji and Nelson used black accents throughout the home in the kitchen cabinetry pulls, chair bases and coffee tables, and in the entryway where it frames the stairway. “That’s something super important when it comes to design,” Velji says, “repeating certain materials throughout the house to create consistency and to let the eye travel through.”

Velji says he likes to hang wallpaper in all of the homes he works on because it adds a fun, quirky quality to any room. In the Contrada-Phillips house, he added distinct wallpaper in shades of blue with hints of white and grey in the main bedroom, main-floor powder room and in Ava’s bedroom. Because of Phillips’ request

for clutter-free spaces, Velji and Nelson used wall sconces in the main bedroom to create dramatic lighting as well as clear up space on the bedside tables.

The basement has an impressive home theatre for weekly movie nights as well as a bar serving Phillips’ home-brewed draught beer. With the typical chaos that comes with working full-time and raising a teenager, Contrada says it was important for her to create an environment where her family members could feel comfortable and truly be themselves. This feels especially true for her since the family experienced some challenging times over the past year.

“One of the things that has resonated out of everything that we’ve gone through is that your home becomes your safe haven,” Contrada says. “When you walk through the doors of your home, you can actually be yourself and feel what you need to feel. And I think that’s what a home represents.”

98 avenueMARCH.20
Designers Aly Velji and Katie Nelson used black as an accent colour in several areas of the home as a way to maintain consistency. Two-storey windows at the front of the home let an abundance of natural light into the entryway, while glass panels on the staircase let the light flow into the rest of the home.

Your Journey of Discovery Leads to Shoe & Canoe Public House

Open space expands skyward toward high ceilings. Natural sunlight streams through large windows. An abstract, upside-down canoe hangs from the ceiling. These are just some of the design elements that make exploration-inspired restaurant Shoe & Canoe the winner of Hotelier Magazine’s Design Award for Best Restaurant/Bar Design.

The Design

The Award

Hotelier Magazine seeks out the best lobbies, renovated spaces, suites, restaurants and overall hotel design to find the best hotel spaces each year.

The Inspiration

David Thompson, a 19th- century cartographer from Hudson’s Bay Company inspired the discoveryfocused design of Shoe & Canoe Public House.

The Cartographer

Arguably one of the most important individuals in Canadian History, David Thompson was a jack-of-all-trades: surveyor, cartographer, astronomer, fur trader, military supplier and farmer. In addition to mapping tens of thousands of kilometers of Canadian territory, Thompson also searched out and discovered a Rocky Mountain –Pacific Ocean trading route. Thompson’s primary method of travel? A canoe.

Designed to emulate David Thompson’s Canadian journey of discovery, Shoe & Canoe Public House draws inspiration from history, nature and cartography. A bespoke, abstract canoe hangs upside down from the restaurant’s ceiling. Natural fabrics and woven textures of rope are incorporated throughout the restaurant. And a custom wood map mural offers a nod to Thompson’s journey. Every material, surface and detail inside Shoe & Canoe Public House offers a true Canadian experience and a tribute to David Thompson’s spirit of adventure.

The Flavors

Beyond style and design, David Thompson’s adventurous spirit and individuality can be experienced through unique drinks and flavors. We named our craft beer after one of Thompson’s nicknames—Stargazer— and the drink itself takes you on a journey from a sweet malty start to a dry, slightly bitter finish. All of our signature cocktails, from the Portage Relief to the Koo-Koo Sint are inspired, in both name and flavor, by Thompson and his adventures. Our well-traveled chefs carefully select our menu featuring locally-sourced ingredients.

Avenue Calgary .com 99
209 4th Ave SE, Calgary AB, T2G 0C6 (403) 205 5416 ADVERTISEMENT



Designer Aly Velji of Alykhan Velji Designs found a balance between minimalism and vibrancy for the home of Tracey Contrada and Clint Phillips. Here are four strategies you can use to do the same.

1. Keep things consistent. Repeating one or two materials throughout will create consistency in the home. “That is one of the biggest rules in

design that most people disregard when it comes to selecting finishes,” Velji says.

2. Build a “colour story” from one feature piece. “Tracey loved the [living room] rug when she saw it and knew she had to have it,” says Velji, who then incorporated colours from the rug around the home. “This can work for artwork, a pillow, or in this case, a rug.”

3. Use natural elements.

“Because this home is so

contemporary, we wanted to introduce natural elements like marble for the fireplace and kitchen backsplash,” Velji says. “This adds an organic feel to the space ... and it’s timeless.”

4. Use colour in your millwork. “Don’t be afraid of adding colour in your space through your millwork,” Velji says. A kitchen island, for example, can add colour without overpowering an entire room.

100 avenueMARCH.20
Design elements such as white marble, black accents and the colour blue continue throughout the home’s bathrooms and powder room. Wall sconces in the main bedroom provide artful lighing while reducing clutter on the bedside tables.


PAGES 96 TO 100

Interior design by Alykhan Velji Designs, 217 4 St. N.E., 403-617-2406, alyveljidesigns.com

Living-room rug from West Elm, 868 16 Ave. S.W., 403-245-1373, westelm.com

Coffee-table base from Valley Metal, 3003 11 St. S.E., 403-243-7778, valleymetal.com; custom top from Pacific Stone, Granite & Marble, 10510 46 St. S.E., 403-238-1100, pacificstone.ca

Couch from CF Interiors, Unit 7, 6325 11 St. S.E., 403-515-0011, cfinteriors.ca

Chairs from West Elm; custom upholstery by Timeless Upholstery, 1235 64 Ave. S.E., 403-291-4848, timelessupholstery.com; fabric from Maxwell Fabrics, 6143 4 St. S.E. 403-259-5940, maxwellfabrics.com

Cushions from HomeSense, multiple locations, homesense.ca, and West Elm

Ocean art from City and She, cityandshe.com

Contour-line-drawing art from HomeSense

Fireplace from Diamond Fireplace & Stone, 10221 15 St. N.E. 403-273-0000, diamondfireplace.com; surround from Stone Tile West, 4040 7 St. S.E., 403-234-7274, stone-tile. com; hearth by Pacific Stone, Granite & Marble

Livingroom light fixture from Carrington Lighting, 2513 5 Ave. N.W., 403-264-5483, carringtonlighting.com

Lamp from EQ3, 8180 11 St. S.E., 403-212-8080, eq3.com

Windows from Lux Windows and Glass Ltd., 6875 9 St. N.E., 403-276-7770, luxwindows.com; curtains by Alykhan Velji Designs

Kitchen backsplash from Stone Tile West

Cabinetry from Kingswood Interiors, 10081 17 St. N.E., 403-208-8808, kingswoodcabinets.com

Countertops from Pacific Stone, Granite & Marble

Appliances from Trail Appliances, three Calgary locations, trailappliances.com

Bar stools from Mobilia, mobilia.ca

Stairwell by Prestige Railings & Stairs, 2777 Hopewell Pl. N.E., 403-250-1020, prestigerailings.com

Hallway bench from HomeSense

Front door from Lux Windows and Glass Ltd.

Bed frame from Metro Element, 1221 Kensington Rd. N.W., 403-257-7588, metroelement.net

Nightstand from Crate and Barrel, Southcentre, 403-278-7020, crateandbarrel.com

Sconce from Wayfair, wayfair.ca

Wallpaper from Crown Surface Solutions, crownsurfacesolutions.com

Ensuite floor and shower tile from Ames Tile & Stone Ltd., 2294 Portland St. S.E., 403-243-0434, amestile.com

Bath tub and fixtures by Wolseley, available through multiple Calgary locations, wolseleyinc.ca

Blue shower tile from Floortrendz, 3425 9 St. S.E., 403-474-4401, floortrendz.ca

Bathroom vanities from Kingswood Interiors

Powder-room pendant from Carrington Lighting Wallpaper from MissPrint, missprint.co.uk

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Living Rooms

Planters inspired by the Contrada-Phillips home.

1. Bolo hanging planter, $50, from Guildhall, 1222 9 Ave. S.E., 403-454-4399, guildhallhome.com

2. Trestle two-piece lacquered standing-planter set, $389, from Metro Element, 1221 Kensington Rd. N.W., 403-257-7588, metroelement.com

3. Bishop pedestal planter, $181, from West Elm, 868 16 Ave. S.W., 403-245-1373, westelm.ca , 1327 9 Ave. S.E., 403-585-4226, plantshop.ca Plant box by Ferm Living, $349, from , 725 11 Ave. S.W., 403-508-2533, kitinteriorobjects.com

1. 2.
Kit photograph courtesy of Ferm Living; Oh K Ceramics photograph by Jared Sych; Metro Element photograph courtesy of Torre & Tagus; West Elm photograph courtesy of West Elm; IKEA photograph courtesy of IKEA
3. 4. 5. 6.

AS TOLD TO Jennifer Friesen

Kirsten Ross

When Kirsten Ross started her career as a goldsmith more than 60 years ago, it felt natural, “as if I’d done it in a past life,” she says. She was 17 years old when she began her apprenticeship in her native country of Denmark, but she learned quickly and received a bronze medal for her work four years later. Ross eventually moved to Calgary, where she continued working as one of the first female goldsmiths in Alberta. In 1969, when she was 28 years old, Ross and a partner started The Goldsmiths. Three years later, Ross became the sole owner, and she continues to design, restore and repair jewellery for Calgarians to this day. “Jewellery can be very personal,” says Ross, “so we make it our attitude to always bend over backwards for clients to do the work right.” Here are 10 of her favourite things in Calgary.

best pizza in town. The Kensington Special has everything on it — it’s just loaded, and they don’t skimp on the cheese, either. I love everything about this pizza.”

2 Celebratory Dinners at Oceana Seafood, Steakhouse & Bar “The staff is always friendly and the food is fabulous. We have big parties there in a private area behind the fireplace. It’s a wonderful place to get everyone together.”

5 Benzing Charlebois Furs

“I have a coat and jacket from there that I’ve had for a long, long time and they’re still beautiful. It’s great quality and there aren’t many furriers left.”

6 Movies at Eau Claire Market “It’s so convenient and it’s not too noisy or crowded. I go there and get my buttery popcorn and relax.”

Subscription “I always get [a subscription] for Theatre Calgary, and I have for years and years. I like the presentation and the plays they choose, but it’s also just nice to get out and see what’s new.”


Pâté from Alpine Sausage

“They have a lot of great, traditional Danish items, but the pâté is my favourite. You take it home and bake it yourself, so the flavours and smells are

7 Tea from Community

Natural Foods “I get so many of my groceries there. It’s just a different energy from big stores, it’s more personable. I get my Throat Coat tea from there, which I love.”

8 Cambrian Pharmacy

“This is an amazing place. They have alternative medicines and services as well as [regular drugstore offerings], and the staff really take care of you. If you need a certain compound, they’ll make it for you.”

9 Raspberry Charlotte from Amandine Bakery

“You don’t too often get cakes with raspberry in them. It’s a thinner cake, with the raspberry layered inside and the dough on top. The flavours go together really well.

10 Rouladen from Edelweiss Imports

“I always get a warm feeling when I go in there. The imports are all European and the food is all homemade The rouladen is my favourite — it has lots of gravy.”

104 avenueMARCH.20 THE LIST
Kirsten Ross, pizza, pâté and cake photography by Jared Sych; Theatre Calgary photograph by Trudie Lee 3 Theatre Calgary Tickets Billy Elliot.
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TITLE: Absentia — Newfoundland and Labrador #6, 2017.

ARTIST: Jennifer Wanner.

MEDIUM: Digital output on alumigraphic panels

Technical assistance from Resolve Photo and Anvy Digital.

SIZE: 26 feet by 34 feet.

LOCATION: The Odeon Building, 3332 20 St. S.W.

NOTE: Absentia was commissioned through Paul Kuhn Gallery for Ronmor Developers. Collages by Wanner can also be seen at YW Hub in Inglewood on loan from the Collection of the Alberta Foundation for the Arts and her animations will be featured in the String Theory Music Collective performance on March 1. Wanner is represented by Paul Kuhn Gallery.

Absentia – Newfoundland and Labrador #6

Vinyl graphics are familiar in marketing and interior design, but watch for the impact when the medium is used by artists such as Jennifer Wanner, who opens up a portal into a magical space of disappearing plant life with the giant vinyl Absentia — Newfoundland and Labrador #6.

The ground-hugging branchlets of ovoid, slightly curled, waxy leaves and pink catkins will be familiar to botanists as Barrens willow. The only place in the world this species grows is on the harsh, limestone barrens of the Great Northern Peninsula of Newfoundland. Subject to wind and water, a Barrens willow can live for a hundred years. Now, it’s threatened by floods and human activity, including road building, quarrying and even walking. Its status is endangered.

Wanner embeds environmental warnings in disarmingly beautiful floral-themed artwork, including watercolour collages, photography

and animation. Prior to Absentia, she hadn’t worked at the scale of a mural before, and it tickled her taste for twisted humour to make one of the tiniest plants on Canada’s endangered species list the size of Godzilla. On the east-facing wall of The Odeon building in Marda Loop, it’s safe from wind and weather and can’t be crushed by footsteps.

The cut-out shape is in sharp focus at the centre. Judging from the detailed edges, the missing section depicted catkins in the foreground of the photograph. Within the outline, more layers are evident, one peeping through the opening of the next. Shapes and colours become abstract, but the shadows that play across the layers confirm that this is a photograph of a stack of photographs, each with excised areas.

Coinciding with Canada 150, Wanner created a series of cross-country botanical hybrids. She joined images of roots, leaves, flowers and

seed pods from endangered species to compose a single surreal life form for each province and territory and one for the country. (Visitors to Glenbow may remember seeing them in the exhibition Second Nature three years ago.) Now, some are in the collection of the Alberta Foundation for the Arts.

A 21st century virtual plant hunter, Wanner collected hundreds of plant images from the Internet, printed them on paper and meticulously cut them for the collages. Committed to reuse and repurpose, she kept the leftover surrounds. The stacks of surrounds became the ingredients for her recent series of large photographs, one of which was enlarged for this mural. In super-size, the image brings refreshing colour and the promise of spring to a part of town that is changing quickly. It also brings a thoughtful note, reminding us to tread carefully.

106 avenueMARCH.20
Photograph by Gavin Semple


Chandelier with mirror glass support with built-in LED and pendant leaves of 3 different sizes, in hand-made curved etched glass, with engravings.

Optional: leaves covered in 24k fine gold.

221 10 Ave SW Calgary, AB 403.262.6813


instagram: @loeyyc

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